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Week 3 Essay

Week 3 Essay

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Searfoss, Preston AP English, Period 3 February 13, 2011 The Parallels of Values Expressed in Gangster Movies with Those of Society

Since the release of “Musketeer’s of Pig Alley” in 1912, gangster movies have proven to be both influential and highly appealing to audiences. The most prominent commonality between these movies is that the gangster falls in the end. There are very few examples in which the gangster succeeds in his evils without suffering harsh repercussions. Thus, the audience perceives the gangsters as failures. While concepts promoted by the gangsters such as establishing oneself through purely independent means, making one’s life and impose it on others, and showing one’s manhood through intimidation, the usual fall of the gangsters at the conclusion of the cinema discredits all of the ideals that they stand for throughout. This creates a perfect example of how not to act or live, thus providing society with the impression that one needs a role model or someone who loves and nurtures him or her in order to succeed. Therefore, the gangster genre upholds the implicit values of society. When analyzing the life of Michael Oher, whose experiences immaculately emulated in “The Blind Side”, it is just one of a myriad of examples that confirms that one must have nurture and guidance in order to succeed. There are few success stories of children who are forced take care of themselves, have the drive, perseverance, and emotional stability that would be required of them specifically in order to excel in school, go on to higher learning, sustain non-disclosable income, then accumulate enough money to put a roof over their heads. Oher lived a dreary

His dad was always in jail. after his senior year. Without hesitance. he would have most likely have continued to be homeless or have the same fate that all of his siblings had. Success for Oher would have been having minimum waged jobs and some how accumulating enough money to put a roof over .52 by the end of his senior year through the utilization of Brigham Young University’s online high school classes to retake courses in which he earned D’s or F’s. was drafted in the first round. His life took a turn for the better when Sean and Leigh Ann Tuohy took him in and made him part of their family.existence as he suffered from homelessness and poverty. His grades in required courses would have been too low to graduate. and by his senior year. which resulted in him getting multiple scholarship offers from division one schools. which allowed him to attend a Division one school. was the starting left tackle on the varsity football team. twenty-third overall pick in the 2009 NFL Draft. He played left tackle at Ole Miss. and he would have never discovered his athletic capabilities. he started to excel in football upon enrolling in Briarcrest Christian School. so Oher was forced to sleep in sheds behind houses. then. and provided him with educational and athletic opportunities that sparked his success. The policemen and people from the Department of Human Services took all of his siblings with the exception of his older brother. The rest is history. he became a top football prospect in Tennessee.76 to 2. and his mother was a crack cocaine addict who was unable to support him or help him succeed. Later. He was able to increase his understandably low GPA of 0. Without Leigh Ann and Sean Tuohy to guide him with the love and compassion necessary for any child to thrive.

left soon after. His mother realizes that he cannot control McQueen’s behavior. and is sent back to Claude. who ruled over him and his mother with an iron fist. Thus the idea that one will unavoidably fail without someone to provide love or guidance is upheld. Julia signed a court order that took him to the California Junior Boys Republic. After his mother takes him back for a third time. When McQueen was only six months old. Without the mentoring and love that his great uncle gave him. where he became mature and changed for the better. and Julia’s third husband. Him and his grandparents moved to his great uncle Claude’s farm. who was a stunt pilot for a barnstorming flying circus. his life spirals out of control. and taken back to his stepfather. His mother decides to request for him to live with her once again. Steve McQueen’s parents proved to be inadequate as well. After a couple of violent exchanges between them. and after a few years. McQueen recalled in his later years that Claude taught him a lot. his father Terrence William McQueen. so McQueen was left with his mother’s parents. McQueen ended up in a street gang committing misdemeanors. and ended up in Texas where he carried out a variety of jobs including being a janitor and a lumberjack. He was sent to Claude’s once again. Similar to Michael Oher’s biological parents. McQueen would have never . He became a role model for the other boys and became part of the Boys Council. He then returned to Julia. His mother Julia Ann was an alcoholic who was unable to take care of a small child. caught by the police. He resumed his life as a gangster and criminal and was forced to endure the wrath of his stepfather. abandoned him and his mother.his head. and his interest in racing was sparked when Claude gave him a red tricycle for his forth birthday. as he once stated in an interview.

He raced motorcycles and cars and designed a bucket seat and transbrake for racecars. she also provided the love and care that her mother was never able to. which earned her the nickname “The Preacher”. who was so impoverished that Winfrey’s wardrobe frequently consisted of potato sacks. and has donated and raised hundreds of millions of dollars to charity programs throughout the world. who always had more children than she could handle. While her grandmother provided only the bare materialistic necessities. Claude played a key role as in McQueen’s success as the love and nurture that he expressed towards him was necessary for him to thrive later on. She suffered a very devastating childhood. as the gangsters in these movies almost always fail in the end due to their lack of authoritative guidance and love.learned most of the skills that he developed as a child. She is very well known for her contributions to schools in Africa and for Hurricane Katrina relief. However. Upon moving to Milwaukee with her mother. Thus the gangster movies do not transgress from the implicit values of our society. She had a mother named Vernita Lee. when peering into the darkness of her childhood our amazement with the degree of her success is further augmented. Oprah Winfrey owns a production company. and never would have discovered his passion for racing. . a magazine. As one of the most famous talk show hosts and philanthropists in history. she received little attention. She taught Oprah how to read at the age of three and got her involved in religious faith. Her mother worked as a cleaning lady and a single mom who earned little money and had little time to bond with her children. The two traveled north and Winfrey spent six years in a rural area to her grandmother. Winfrey developed a venerable ability to recite bible verses.

She also secured a full scholarship to Tennessee State University by winning an oratory contest and was the victor of the Miss Black Tennessee beauty pageant. To stop being made fun of for her low-class appearance. and resolved to flee from home. Both her Grandmother and her father played integral roles in Winfrey’s ability to succeed. her uncle. She also partook other rebellious actions such as lying and arguing with her mother. and placed second in the nation in dramatic interpretation among members of high school speech teams. which helped her develop her academic strengths early. She was also hired during her senior year of high school and freshman and sophomore years of college as a part time news anchor for the local black radio station. who later died of AIDS-related causes. she resorted to stealing money from her mother. where the shame affiliated with her family’s low economic status clung to her like a powerful magnet wherever she went. After excelling early on at Lincoln High School. Her grandmother taught her how to read at age three.and was eventually sent to live in Nashville upon becoming an older sister due to her mother’s inability to take care of two children simultaneously. Out of frustration. as well as the importance of . and made education her priority. who was strict but encouraging. In the four years leading up to her adolescence. and dating older boys. She claimed to be molested by her cousin. She became an honor student who was voted the most popular girl. She was also pregnant at age fourteen and her son died shortly after birth. she endured what were perhaps the most traumatizing experiences of her existence. and her family friend. she transferred to Nicolet High School. she now had a half-brother named Jeffrey. her mother sent her to live with her biological father Vernon. When she came back to live her mother.

Her father. they turn to one . mentioning that Hattie Mae encouraged her to speak in public and to portray herself in a positive manner. while from a more upstanding view. The behaviors most commonly associated with a gangster are all connected to fulfill one common persona. who was only in the picture during her adolescence years. they label adults with negative generalizations and assume that the best way to achieve one’s happiness and goals is to rely one oneself rather than one’s parents or other authority figures. This misconception causes gangsters’ lives to spin out of control. She also acknowledged her grandmother’s influence. which helped her to be hopeful in her worst trials. A gangster acts as though he or she does not have any mature adult influence or guidance and thinks that acting strong will ensure intimidation. Instead of thinking of each person as an individual. but instead is developed as he or she grows up with an adult that has proven him or herself to be untrustworthy. she would have most likely not gotten a full ride to TSU. From gangsters’ points of view. Had she not been given the opportunity to participate in an oratory contest. Since their ability to rely on adults is tainted. He or she then feels unable to respect or enjoy the presence other adults as they are afraid of once again being unsatisfied with the way that they are treated by the adult or with the was the adult acts. all of their traits give them confidence. which she almost had to have due of her parent’s financial situations. provided her with academic goals and emphasized the importance of her education. they promote arrogance. The negative ideas that a gangster has regarding adults is not formed instantly.church. Without these opportunities Winfrey would have never been as successful. as they become enthralled in unconstructive and often fatal activities.

. which nearly always leads to an inevitable downfall. This upholds the idea that one needs to have an adult figure that can properly provide for them and be trustworthy in order for a child or adolescent to be successful in the future.another to act for their family and for guidance.

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