After a blurred trauma over the summer, Melinda enters high school a selective mute. Struggling with school, friends, and family, she tells the dark tale of her experiences, and why she has chosen not to speak.
A massage therapist looking to overcome her addictions and reconnect with her son, whose father is an anthropologist in South America studying the Yanomani people, moves in with a wealthy ex-client in New Jersey.
In the book Speak, by Laurie Halse Anderson, Melinda Sordino is forced into the worst year of her life. Her best friend, Rachel Bruin, has turned against her with all other of Melinda's fellow students looking away; not daring to take a single glance at Melinda. All because of one stupid end-of-summer party.Written by
Sam Gerdemann, www.centralproductionsyt.weebly.com
The movie came out in 2004, but the book it is based on came out in 1999. So the turn of the century for the book would be the 1900s. For her extra credit assignment, Melinda is told to write an essay on a cultural influence at the turn of the century. Yet the movie takes place at the turn of the 21st century, around 2003. It should have specified "turn of the last [20th] century." She decides to write about the suffragists of the 1910s. See more »
The suffragettes fought for their right to speak. They were attacked, arrested and thrown in jail for daring to do what they wanted to do. Like them, Melinda is willing to stand up for what she believes. That no one should be forced to give speeches.
What is this?
Melinda has to deliver her report to the class as part of the assignment. She made copies everyone can read.
Oh, no you don't. When I say oral, I mean oral.
Now you sit down!
And you read that report.
[...] See more »
Requiem, Op. 48
Written by Gabriel Fauré
Performed by Lisa Beckley, Nicholas Gedge, Colm Carey and the Schola Cantorum of Oxford conducted by Jeremy Summerty
Courtesy of Naxos by arrangement with Source/Q See more »
I can react to this movie on a number of levels. First of all, it is a wonderful thing that this film was made. It deals with a very real yet very troubling issue, and handles it with sensitivity and hope. This movie has the potential to really help people, and I can't think of a better legacy for a filmmaker.
Despite all that, I wish this would have been a better movie. The pacing of the story seemed wildly out of whack and there were a couple of directorial decisions that could certainly be questioned. On the other hand, Kristen Stewart's performance in the lead role of Melinda was excellent, although the rest of the acting left me flat. (Even Steve Zahn, who I normally love, seemed a bit miscast.) And while the writing didn't grab me, there were enough light-hearted moments to make Melinda's personal anguish bearable for the audience.
Beyond cinema as therapy, the film contained meaningful insights into the potential of artistic expression in healing, the general alienation of being a freshman in high school, or the critical relationship of an individual's will and determination with the healing process. People should see this movie not because of its cinematic excellence but because it has an important and optimistic message.
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