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I don't often watch new shows; I wait until they've been on a season or two, have heard about it from all my friends, and feel compelled to catch up with the hype. I saw the previews for this and thought it looked delightful, so I figured, "why not?"
I was very disappointed with the actual product.
All of the actors are WAY too over the top; the pace of the dialogue was obviously intended to be snappy and witty, but it just seems rushed and forced; all of the characters are horribly stereotypical, but not in a cutesy fun way: it's almost insulting. The most grating thing about this? The horrific rhythmic clapping they play for scene transitions.
I'll stick around for two more episodes (shows very often change after the pilot). Hopefully they'll fix the issues, but I doubt it.
Freedom Writers (2007)
I had the honor of meeting Ms. Gruwell, and only once you meet her can you possibly understand how she had such a profound affect on these children. The movie is beyond wonderful and doesn't stray from the book at all. It is completely TRUE, every single bit of the movie, it's not simply "based on a true story" it IS a true story. And unlike other movies of the same genre (Dangerous Mind, Coach Carter, Remember The Titans) Most these children make something of themselves thanks to Ms. Gruwell (one passed away after attending college from a lung transplant difficulty). They become lawyers, doctors, authors, teachers, etc. How many of you have had a teacher that could have that kind of affect on so many children who had given up hope on even living to be 30? I highly recommend the book "The Freedom Writers Diary" as well as all the books mentioned within; Night (by Eli Weisel), The Diary of Anne Frank (by Anne Frank), Zlata's Diary (by Zlata Filopovic), and The Wave (by Todd Strasser). All the "diary" stories are 100% real diaries. Night is the memoirs of a holocaust survivor. The Wave is based on a true story (This one is my favorite, it helps you understand the mob mentality of eugenics wars).