7.5/10
54,783
234 user 84 critic

Freedom Writers (2007)

A young teacher inspires her class of at-risk students to learn tolerance, apply themselves, and pursue education beyond high school.

Writers:

(screenplay), (book) | 1 more credit »
Reviews
Popularity
1,871 ( 1,187)

Watch Now

From $2.99 (SD) on Amazon Video

ON DISC
2 wins & 1 nomination. See more awards »

Videos

Photos

Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
...
...
...
Eva Benitez (as April Lee Hernandez)
...
...
Jaclyn Ngan ...
Sergio Montalvo ...
Jason Finn ...
...
...
...
...
Ben Daniels
Antonio García ...
Edit

Storyline

It's 1994 in Long Beach, California. Idealistic Erin Gruwell is just starting her first teaching job, that as freshman and sophomore English teacher at Woodrow Wilson High School, which, two years earlier, implemented a voluntary integration program. For many of the existing teachers, the integration has ruined the school, whose previously stellar academic standing has been replaced with many students who will be lucky to graduate or even be literate. Despite choosing the school on purpose because of its integration program, Erin is unprepared for the nature of her classroom, whose students live by generations of strict moral codes of protecting their own at all cost. Many are in gangs and almost all know somebody that has been killed by gang violence. The Latinos hate the Cambodians who hate the blacks and so on. The only person the students hate more is Ms. Gruwell. It isn't until Erin holds an unsanctioned discussion about a recent drive-by shooting death that she fully begins to ... Written by Huggo

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Their story. Their world. Their future. See more »

Genres:

Biography | Crime | Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for violent content, some thematic material and language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
Edit

Details

Country:

|

Language:

Release Date:

5 January 2007 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Écrire pour exister  »

Box Office

Budget:

$21,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$9,405,582 (USA) (5 January 2007)

Gross:

$36,581,633 (USA) (9 March 2007)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

| |

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

This is the second time that Hilary Swank and Patrick Dempsey have been together in a film; the first was for Iron Jawed Angels (2004). See more »

Goofs

Ms. Gruwell makes a reference to "Snoop Dogg" in the movie, but during the timeline of this story, he was still known as Snoop Doggy Dogg. See more »

Quotes

Andre: My brother taught me what the life is for a young black man. Pimp, deal, whatever. Learn what colors to wear. Gang banners. You can sell to one corner, but you can't sell another. Learn to be quiet. The wrong word can get you popped.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in 21 (2008) See more »

Soundtracks

This Is How We Do It
by Montell Jordan, Oji Pierce & Slick Rick (as Ricky M.L. Walters)
Performed by Montell Jordan
Contains a sample of "Children's Story" by Slick Rick (as Ricky M.L. Walters)
Performed by Slick Rick
Courtesy of The Island Def Jam Music Group
Under license from Universal Music Enterprises
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

 
Great Film
24 October 2006 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

I went to a special screening last night. I was hugely impressed. I actually cried, a rarity for me. It was moving and poignant. I will watch it again and again.

I won't spoil it for anyone, but I think the ideas about education expressed are universal, regardless of the race of either the teacher or the students.

I was also impressed by the soundtrack and cinematography, and how they incorporated the diaries into the story.

As usual, Hillary Swank puts in a good performance.

I have not read the book, so I don't know how it compares, but I am looking into purchasing a copy.


109 of 163 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for:
?