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Marilee J. Layman

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11:56 am: Blackboard Jungle

This stars Glenn Ford as the teacher and Anne Francis as his wife. The two primary students are Sidney Poitier and Vic Morrow.

Before the movie starts, there's a note on the screen -- this movie was made to show that we don't have to have juvenile delinquency. Richard Brooks, the writer & producer, wasn't quite right. Plus, he says the reason the kids are so violent is because their fathers were in the war and their mothers went to work.

The teacher gets a job at an inner city school where he teaches very unruly boys in English. All the school is unruly and on the way home the first day, this teacher and a colleague are beaten up by our teacher's students. When the other teacher comes back to work, he brings a record player and rare records. His students break it all.

The wife starts getting phone calls and letters telling her that the teacher is having an affair and she starts worrying. She's had a miscarriage before and is sure she'll have another because of the stress.

Our teacher is attacked by Morrow's character with a knife and after he fights Morrow, the other students, including Poitier, help keep Morrow in hand on the way to the principal. The teacher tries to get Poitier to continue school instead of being a mechanic -- he says he'll never get a job from college because people don't hire blacks for that. When the teacher gets home, his wife has been taken to the hospital because she's having cramps. The letters from Morrow are on the floor and their neighbor picks them up and shows them to the teacher. The baby is born, but in danger because of the prematurity. He tries to tell his wife that all the bad things said about him were false and she finally believes him. The baby comes out of danger and they listen to a Christmas song on the radio.

I liked this movie, but it isn't the bright light intended to change teenagers.

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[User Picture]
From:kip_w
Date:August 9th, 2010 12:32 am (UTC)
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Since you didn't mention it, I'll add that the movie was written by Evan Hunter, aka Ed McBain. I seem to recall that Evan Hunter's a nym too, but since his real name doesn't ring any bells with me, I've forgotten it.
[User Picture]
From:mjlayman
Date:August 9th, 2010 03:49 pm (UTC)
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Oh, I didn't know that was a pseudonym! Brooks is writer and producer, so I figured he was the one with the most input.
[User Picture]
From:kip_w
Date:August 9th, 2010 06:39 pm (UTC)
(Link)
Ack! I should have said he wrote the novel, not the movie. Incidentally, Wikipedia says he was born Salvatore Albert Lombino, so there you go. I'll have that forgotten by tonight.
[User Picture]
From:mjlayman
Date:August 9th, 2010 06:49 pm (UTC)
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Wow, that's a lot of pseudonyms!
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