I’ve watched this movie before, because the cast is my favorite for all time, Denzel Washington. But during School of Children Counselling, the purpose of watching this movie had been changed. We had to look through the effect of abuse that Antwone had to deal in his childhood years. He’d been abandoned by her mother since he was born (in the jail) and he had to stay with foster family or in government house. Don’t forget to notice the physical, emotional, verbal and sexual abuse that he had gone through his childhood.
Child counsellor, child psychologist and parents need to watch this movie for 2 purposes:
- To understand the condition of the victims in many abuse cases. This movie describes the condition of Antwone during and after the abuse occurred. We can learn to understand how it felt for a child to be beaten, strangled and sexually abused. We can get the general idea on how that abuse will affect a child in his teens and adult life.
- To look inside ourselves of what we have done to children around us, could be our own children or those who are working with us. We tend to do ‘daily abuse’ such as: look down at a child, swearing, call them by name and many more.
Because of the abuse that he had in his childhood, Antwone is now a grown up man who can’t handle his feeling toward others. He will easily punch his co-workers in the Navy, but he also afraid to get into relationship with woman. He never kissed a woman or have physical contact with them, since the day when a young woman in foster care abused him sexually. This movie captured that moment perfectly! When Antwone had to kiss his girlfriend, he could relieving the moment of that abuse. But, with love and real affection from his girlfriend, Antwone can get through that moment.
Step by step, he’s doing what needs to be done. He looked out for his true family – his mother and relatives from his father (who had been shot by his ex-girlfriend). At first, he imagined that this reunion would be something terrifying, but by the time he met them, he can get his sense of belonging back. He felt that he has identity as someone else’ family and that feeling has been missing from his heart since long.
The process of helping Antwone, also has a deep impact on the psychiatrist who helped him. That process helped him to get out from his own marriage problem. It seems that when we help other people, we help ourselves too. The meaning of giving is never ending, we can always give something that we have to others and eventually, we will get something back in return (Well, I’m not talking in a business way of thinking).
If you want to know more, this movie worth a watch…