And in fact, this film is a two and a half hour parade of stereotypes equaled only by the seven dwarves. It's the thinking man's Forrest Gump, and the crowning achievement of screenwriter and cliché master Patrick Duncan. I rarely remember who said something first, but I can guarantee you Patrick Duncan said it last. Look for the shy student who learns self-confidence, the devoted wife who stands by her man, the dumb-but-honest kid who dies for his country, the small town kid with big city talent who risks everything for a shot at Broadway, the dedicated educators, the bureaucrats who stand in their way... lay the beans on your card and you can hit bingo before the denouement.
I saw this film for just one reason: to see how badly they handled the Deaf character. In Hollywood, Deaf characters slide along a sorry continuum between the shy and melancholic, and the isolated and hostile, all symbolic, none bearing any similarity to any actual Deaf person I've ever met. Hearing people have no idea what Deaf people are actually like. The community of Deaf people in America is tight, it's vibrant, it's joyful, and every child born Deaf in America has this tremendous society just waiting to embrace it. But this isn't common knowledge among hearing America, who can only imagine themselves, suddenly cut off auditorily from the world they know, and so they project this onto characters they don't know, and create a sad stereotype with no basis whatsoever in reality.
Anyway, so I walked into Mr.Read more ›