I don’t generally get too caught up in what happens in Hollywood, I certainly don’t get too torn up when famous people die, not because I don’t care but because I never knew them. It is always sad when you hear of someone passing on but I can’t really cry tears for something I never even saw in real life and only know them as the characters they play.
But the passing of Robin Williams did make me rather sad.
Dead Poets Society is one of my all time favourite movies. I have watched it over and over, I never tire of it. If all teachers had half as much passion as John Keating had we would not have the problems we do with education.
It is possible though, that I mourned the loss of John Keating, Mrs Doubtfire, Peter Pan, Chris Nielsen and Jack more than I actually mourned the loss of the man who played all those characters.
As I thought back to the all the movies he had starred in, it got me thinking about other actors, movies, sports men, singers and teachers from my childhood who have shaped my life. It was after watching Dead Poets Society that I knew that I wanted to write.
No matter what anybody tells you, words and ideas can change the world. John Keating
We really are the sum of the experiences and people we have encountered.
If I think back over my childhood, there are so many characters, books, events and movies that impacted me.
- Jonty Rhodes and his famous field dives,
- The 1995 world cup victory – that moment with Madiba is still one of my best moments,
- Princess Di and Charles getting married – we watched it at school
- The death of Princess Diana
- Opening of schools to non-white pupils – we had those big army tank things (I cant think of the name now) parked outside our school for weeks.
- The floods in the 80′s – we had to queue for water from big water trucks
- Devils Advocate – this movie, for me, is such a powerful depiction of consequences of our actions.
- The 1994 elections
- The Grahamstown Arts Festival
These are just a few of the moments that stand out for me but there are so many things that shape who we are, how we think and why we make the choices we make.
What are some of yours? Do you have a favourite Robin Williams movie?