Week 1 Assignment – Jay Fulk

        It’s really hard for me to think about watching a movie or television show that would alter my view of the world. I think that I have a pretty firm grasp on how I view, and always will, view the world. I know that the world is full of hate, grief, violence, and darkness and also that those things will always be present in the world. I also know that the world is full of love, beauty, peace, and light and also that these things outnumber the darkness. That is my basic view of the world, so a movie or a television show really can’t change my view. Today we watch the news more than ever before, mainly because it’s more accessible than ever before. Watching the current ISIS attacks can be completely shocking and reprehensible, but again, I go back to the violence and hatred that I already know existing in the world. Unfortunately it will always be something that has to be dealt with, hatred and violence has been around since the beginning of time.

          I chose to watch a movie last night that I have already seen, but it’s been about a decade since I last watched it. I consider it one of the greatest movies ever made and probably a top 10 performance by the leading actor, Edward Norton. The movie is American History X, and it portrays a great deal of hatred, violence, intolerance, redemption, and acceptance. It covers so many different feelings and emotions that it makes you really think about humanity in a different way. Before the movie, I had a few things on my mind. Mainly, I was thinking about what the world will be like when my little girls are adults? It’s a loaded question because there are so many things that could happen in the next 17 to 20 years. Knowing what this movie was about already, I tried to think about what I encountered as a teenager and what my girls may encounter as well. This movie stars Edward Norton, who is in his early twenties I believe. He has a large influence over his younger teenage brother, which is what caused this thought process. How can I, as a husband and a father, influence my family? How can I make sure that it is a positive influence? They seem like really easy questions to answer, but they really are more difficult to answer than you think.

        American History X is a very violent movie and it is not for the faint of heart. It depicts the hatred, violence, and intolerance of white folks towards African-Americans in our country. Edward Norton’s character hates African-American’s and ends up killing one in front of his house. It’s an incredible story of redemption, as he finds peace and tolerance while in prison. When he gets out, he sees that his little brother is following the same destructive path that he walked. He attempts to save his little brother, but ultimately hate and violence takes his life.

        After watching this movie, it doesn’t really change my views on the world, because I already know that atrocities like this happened and that it’s a part of our history unfortunately. What I can say is that this movie will make you look at yourself and assess your life. It will make you think about priorities and also about petty indifferences that really don’t matter in the long run. It is a thought provoking movie about what it means to be human, in general, and what it takes to co-exist with all of humanity, regardless of differences we may have.