Film Analysis : Finding Forrester

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William Henry once said, "The eyes shout what the lips fear to say." In the movie Finding Forrester, the director, Gus Van Sant, chose to use eyes as a motif. Throughout the analysis of eyes, one can conclude that the director embedded this element into the movie in order to reveal the characters’ inner emotions and to reveal character development.
Throughout the course of the movie there are several instances in which eyes and eye contact reveal affection and admiration. For example, when Jamal talks to Claire it is evident that there is flirtation and admiration between them based on the way Jamal looks at her. On the other hand, the admiration in Claire 's eyes is not as prevalent for she looks at Jamal as if he is token. There are
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This allows the audience to infer that there will be conflict between Jamal and Hartwell. The audience sees a similar resentment in Fly 's (?) eyes when Jamal comes back to the basketball court he used to play at. Fly (?) looks at Jamal with bitterness in his eyes, because in his eyes Jamal left his roots to study at a wealthy private school. Another instance in which hatred and anger are revealed through eyes occurs when Jamal challenges Crawford in his classroom. The entire time Crawford and Jamal continue to have steady eye contact, but as Crawford continues to provide Jamal with quotes the anger in his eyes grows, for he was challenged in his own classroom and beat at his own game.
While the presence of eyes and eye contact can reveal a lot, the absence of these elements can have an even greater impact. The absence of these elements in the movie reveals that the characters are putting up a shield to protect themselves from being vulnerable to the world that surrounds them. For instance, when Jamal talks to the man with the BMW he looks him directly in the eye revealing that he is confident speaking to him. On the other hand, the man is wearing dark sunglasses and Jamal cannot see directly into his eyes. This creates a barrier between Jamal and the man, for he cannot receive a clear understanding of what the man is thinking.

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