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View from a disinterested East Coast audience member
I read a few of these posts, and think I might have a different perspective. I live in Washington, D.C., and have never been to Indiana outside of a visit to Bloomington as a child. I went to a public high school in upstate New York, near Syracuse, in the 70's. My friend and I went to the movie to see if and how high school and high school students have changed since we were in school. We were not interested in "Warsaw High" as a institution, nor in learning about Warsaw as a community. And after we left, we talked about the movie and never discussed "Warsaw as a community". We talked about the individual kids. It may help those of you who think the audience is going to draw negative opinions about your community to know that most of the audience doesn't think this was a study of your community - I saw it as a snapshot of a few high school kids from an American town. As I watched, I did wonder about how "typical" high school interactions could be filmed with people wired for sound and with cameras in their face, etc. I knew some of it had to be staged or severely affected by the presence of the camera. The center of the film, for me, was the pressures on, and insecurities of, the kids. I found the individual interviews to be probably the most honest and reliable part of the movie. Jake, Hanna, and the others said some pretty revealing and insightful (and embarrassing) things about themselves; sometimes funny, sometimes touching. And at my age, I know these are kids, as I was once a kid, who will grow up and out of this period of their lives. So I don't see the kids as stuck where they were. Again, it's a snap shot. Kids want to please their Dads by getting in to the right school or getting a scholarship; kids want a boyfriend or a girlfriend; there are cliques; there are jealousies and power trips. Yep, it's high school. That's all I saw. I liked the movie. Sorry if the film crew was rude. But Warsaw, chill out. I have no more or less an opinion of a town I never heard of, and whose name I will forget tomorrow, than before. To a ticket buyer like me, it wasn't really about you; it was touching on the universal American high school experience. Half true, half false; real and also TV and movie generated. The kids all got off to school and are growing up. We should, too. It's all gonna be OK.
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