Dead Poets Society

Scene where Knox Overstreet is on the telephone to Kris.

Knox Overstreet played a fair part in the film Dead Poets Society. One
particular scene that Knox was in was the phone conversation with the girl he
loves, Kris.

The scene starts with Knox at the telephone. The camera closes in on
his face and his fingers dialling the telephone. The camera stays on his face
as the phone rings and awaits a pick up. When Kris picks up the phone, Konx’s
facial expression changes from one of ambition to one of much nervousness. The
camera swings to show Knox’s hand as he promptly hangs up the phone. Next, the
camera swings around from Knox to his friends. This medium close-up shows the
disappointment on all their faces and that expression makes Knox ring once more.

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This time, the camera angles are the same and Knox goes through with the
phone call all the way.

While he is talking, the camera is focused on his face and hand holding
the phone to his ear. When Knox hears the news that he has been invited to go
to a party with the girl of his dreams, his face lights up and he cant help but
smile. Still with the same angle, the camera swings around to show the faces of
his friends as he tells them his news. Their facial expressions as showed by
the camera are delightful and happy ones. This makes Knox even more happy.

The scene ends with a close up of Knox hanging up the phone and then a
high level shot of him running up the stairs.

Scene where Mr Keating tell the class to come up and stand on the desk.

To start this scene camera view as seen through Mr Keating’s eyes shows
the whole class sitting quietly. He tells the class to come up and stand on the
desk and he does it himself. A high angle shot show Mr Keating standing on the
desk and looking around. We then see a low angle view of the whole class. This
shot shows that the class is reluctant to go up as it is not normal procedure.

You can tell that they are all used to a strict almost boring class and that is
why they are slow to try out Mr Keatings new methods.

As each student goes up we see a high angle shot of them and then a shot
of Mr Keatings face as he tells the boys to think differently and act

2.) Neil
The first scene where the director makes the audience feels sorry for
Neil is early in the movie. This happens where all Neil’s friends are around.

Neil’s father comes in and the camera goes into a low angle one, looking down
upon Neil. The camera moves around to show all his friends ready to leave but
then goes back to Mr Perry as he tells them all to stay. With the camera
switching from Neil to Mr Perry, Mr Perry delivers the news that Neil is to
cease all participation on the school paper. Mr Perry embarrasses Neil in front
of his friends and when Neil tries to reason with his father he is treated like
a criminal. Once outside Neil’s room, Mr Perry gives Neil a stern and
unreasonable talking to. A close up of Neil’s face reveals a sad and angry
young man who knows he cannot defy his fathers wishes.

When Mr Perry leaves, Neil’s friends peer around the door and we once
again see Neil’s face. This time he is putting on a brave face and assuring his
friends that he doesn’t mind giving up the school paper when really he is

Most times that we feel sorry for Neil are times where Neil clashes with
his strict father. The next time we feel for him is when he is all revved up
about going for the lead part in the play. He is really happy and can’t wait to
start, but when Todd queries Neil about his father’s opinion. This “bursts
Neil’s bubble” as he is faced with reality. Neil knows that his father would
not approve of his part in the play and Neil actually looses his temper with

The director shows Neil’s emotions on the matter through a medium level
shot of Neil and Todd.

When Neil gets the part in the play, he fakes a permission note from his
father thinking he can participate in the play without his father knowing. I
don’t know about the rest of the class but I felt sorry here as I think it is
sad that you have to keep something like this a secret from your parents. I
would like my parents to see me if I was as good as him at acting.

When Neil’s father finds out that his son is in the play from a
different source, he hastens to the school and forbids Neil to be a part of the
play. This is the night before the opening. We feel sorry for him here as we
see Neil’s face grow sadder than when he was dis-allowed to participate in the
school paper.

Neil takes his problem to the wise teacher, Mr Keating. Here we feel
very sorry Neil as we se him unable to control his emotions and he weeps. A
sympathetic Mr Keating tells him to stand up to his father and remain in the
play. This cheers Neil up and the audience think that he will tell his father
but it is sad when we learn that he lied to Mr Keating about him telling his

Neil would rather lie to a teacher than tell his father. That is sad
and in my opinion that is the saddest thing apart from his death.

When Mr Perry enters the theatre during the play and Neil sees him, that
change in the facial expression shows us that Neil is scared, but determined to
complete the play.

After the play when Neil is taken home, low angled camera shots give the
impression of Neil being lesser of a person than his father. He seems to be
small, weak and powerless against his father. He is unable to stand up against
his father and when he eventually tries he is left speechless and his facial
expression “helpless”, it was as if he had given up altogether and after
watching the movie we know he has given up.

The end of Neil’s sad life begins with Neil carrying out an almost
“spiritual” ceremony and we see him treasuring the crown of thorns he wore in
the play.

To me, the director made Neil powerless against his father and that is
why I have sympathy for him.

Category: Music and Movies

Dead Poets Society

Dead Poets Society Dead Poets Society Hysterical Text One person’s interpretation of a story is always different than another’s. Some of us may see things that are not being shown to us. Dead Poets Society, in author Tania Modleski’s eyes has taken on a manifestation larger than the author herself. This story is not what the author will have you believe, whereas the true story was hidden in the misconception of Modleski’s beliefs. The sexual content, homoerotic tensions, and antiauthoritarian behavior, seemed to come from the author’s wishful thinking as opposed to the reality of the film. In the film a homosexual theme could not be seen.

When Mr. Keating came to the school to teach, he did not insist on being called oh captain my captain. That phrase was used only three times in the movie, once by Mr. Keating himself. Oh captain my captain was used by two separate young men as a show of admiration and respect for Mr.

Keating. In contrast Modleski sees oh captain my captain as a “pious deference to male authority”(Modleski ” Dead White Male Heterosexual Poets Society” 315) because the very authority the film pretends to be challenging. One character that just enrolled at the school and was somewhat of a loner, and misfit, and is expected to achieve great success as his brother did before him. He is an example of how some families push one child to be exactly like another i.e. his older brother.

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When he first comes in contact with Mr. Keating he could not speak openly in front of a crowd. This is evident when he decides not to write a poem that is to be read in front of the class the following day. When Mr. Keating calls upon him to read and he cannot, he uses the technique of spinning him around while spewing out poetic phrases.

This seems to work because he belts out some poetry from within and Mr. Keating says to him “don’t you ever forget this”, knowing that the technique had worked. There is one character that committed suicide according to Modleski because his father would not let him play a fairy in a play. What this character was trying to show was that he had finally broken free of his father’s decisions on how, and what, he should do. He auditioned for a play and got the part all by himself, without his fathers approval. This was something that he wanted to do, and was good at it.

When his father forbid him to pursue acting, even second to him being a doctor, this was all he could take. Him putting his fairy crown on the open window ledge, just before committing suicide, symbolized the freeing of the actor inside, like an offering to a higher being. The boys in Welton Boarding School share what all boys their age share while at school. There are no signs of homoerotic tensions present. There are signs of groups forming and friendships being made.

When they decided to form the Dead Poets Society it was a normal male bonding experience. An all male boarding school does not mean that they are all homosexuals who are crying out for recognition. The movie did not illustrate any homosexual tension between the boys at any time in the movie. When Mr. Keating told the boys to rip out he introduction of the book he was trying to illustrate that writing poetry was not like reading a recipe. Poetry was feeling what you are writing, and it was from the heart not the mind. You cannot just put words down on paper they have to as Mr. Keating put it “Drip off your tongue”. Standing on the desk in a nonconforming way illustrated that when you’re up there you see things in a different way.

Do not follow the same old way of doing things because it stifles creativity. Mr. Keating wanted these boys to break through of their fears, and achieve more than just what was expected of them. This boarding school was very strict and old fashioned, and Mr. Keating knew this, once being a student himself.

His way of breaking out was to be in the Dead poets Society were he could make-up, and read poetry without conforming to the conservative attitude of the school. When he came to this school he knew that he was going to encourage freethinking. This is why there is no explanation for him leaving the school in England. Mr. Keating probably was dismissed from the school in England for his freethinking ways.

He may travel from school to school spreading the Dead poets Society way of free expression. This is illustrated when a boy returns to his room, and finds Mr. Keating’s book of poetry lying on his desk. When Modleski critiqued this movie, with good intentions in mind, somehow she lost her way. There are two sides to every story and these boys and Mr. Keating’s has been told.

The illustrations, and aforementioned reasons, show that Dead poets society is a hysterical text. We may never know the real meaning behind this movie, but we all have our interpretations of it. There are no hidden or reclusive meanings being portrayed here, just a boarding school that suppresses freedom of thought, and creativity. This is why Mr. Keating’s character comes through loud and clear.

English Essays.


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