Finding Forrester

Finding Forrester
i0 could have been a shallow variant of
i The Karate Kid
i0 , congratulating itself for featuring a 16-year-old black kid from the South Bronx who's a brilliant scholar-athlete. Instead, director Gus Van Sant plays it matter-of-fact and totally real, casting a nonactor (Rob Brown) as Jamal, a basketball player and gifted student whose writing talent is nurtured by a famously reclusive author. William Forrester (Sean Connery) became a literary icon four decades earlier with a Pulitzer-winning novel, then disappeared (like J.D. Salinger) into his dark, book-filled apartment, agoraphobic and withdrawn from publishing, but as passionate as ever about writing. On a dare, Jamal sneaks into Forrester's musty sanctuary, and what might have been a condescending clich'e9--homeboy rescued by wiser white mentor--turns into an inspiring meeting of minds, with mutual respect and intelligence erasing boundaries of culture and generation.
Comparisons to Van Sant's
i Good Will Hunting
i0 are inevitable, but
i Finding Forrester
i0 is more honest and less prone to touchy-feely sentiment, as in the way Jamal and a private-school classmate (Anna Paquin) develop a mutual attraction that remains almost entirely unspoken. The film takes a conventional turn when Jamal must defend his integrity (with Forrester's help) in a writing contest judged by a skeptical teacher (F. Murray Abraham), but this ethical subplot is a credible catalyst for Forrester's most dramatic display of friendship. It's one of many fine moments for Connery and Brown (a screen natural), in a memorable film that transcends issues of race to embrace the joy of learning.
i --Jeff Shannon

uuid: 81A8E159-4313-4F9F-B504-6E5FF418BA45
upc: 9780767861434
title: Finding Forrester
theatricalDate: 19-12-2000
stars: F. Murray Abraham
Charles Bernstein (III)
Stephanie Berry
Rob Brown (VI)
Sean Connery
purchase date: 19-06-2007
publisher: Sony Pictures
published: 24-04-2001
price: $14.94
net Rating: 4
MPAA Rating: PG-13
minutes: 136
last lookup time: 203998448
genre: Love & Romance
Coming of Age
School Days
Artists & Writers
Class Differences
Culture Clash
Urban Life
Fighting the System
Mothers & Sons
Van Sant, Gus
fullTitle: Finding Forrester
features: Anamorphic
currentValue: $4.26
created: 203998448
country: us
aspect: DVD
asin: B00005ASOC