American Teacher Review and Trailer

Teaching is a tough profession, especially in America – no argument here.  But just how tough is it?  American teachers work long hours for low pay, get little respect as professionals, and have to spend money from their own pockets on school supplies due to constant budget cuts.  It sure sounds pretty tough to me, yet all these facts aren’t anything new.  I don’t claim to know all the ins and outs of America’s educational system, but even I was aware of the many hardships educators face within the teaching profession, so I was curious as to what director, Vanessa Roth‘s latest documentary could teach me that I didn’t already know.

For starters, it taught me that one of the greatest actors working, Matt Damon, is probably one of the dullest narrators I have ever heard.  It sounded as if he just phoned in his narration and judging by some of the noticeably bad sound mixing, a few times it sounded like his voice was being recorded via Skype.

It also taught me that animation, which consists of different country’s flags popping on and off the screen is just as lame as it sounds.  Charts would have been just as effective when visualizing certain points and would have saved the filmmakers a lot of money.

I know Roth’s heart was in the right place when making this film. Her overall message of the importance of educators in America and the nation’s need to place higher value on its educators is clear. Unfortunately, that message is accompanied with go-to inspirational musical cues of a children’s choir ditty and shoddy editing – especially during some interviews.

I’m sure any educator seeing this film will absolutely adore it. As for any fan of film, especially documentaries, this one might be a tad underwhelming.  Ask yourself this: “Do I already know that teaching is an unrewarding, low-paying, not very well respected profession?”  If you answered yes, then you might want to think about seeing something else.  If you answered no, then I’m sorry for spoiling the movie for you.

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Categories: Reviews

2 Comments on “American Teacher Review and Trailer”

  1. Nora
    October 3, 2011 at 6:36 pm #

    Don’t assume all educators will like a movie just because it is about them. We are also capable of making judgments!

  2. Adam
    October 3, 2011 at 10:11 pm #

    Hi Nora,

    Figures, of all people, a school teacher would be the one to reprimand me. Let me now correct my statement and apologize.

    I will now change my original statement of, “I’m sure any educator seeing this film will absolutely adore it” to “I’m sure there will be some educators who see this film and will absolutely adore it”

    For the record, I love school teachers, but ones that use an exclamation point when commenting on film posts tend to intimidate me!

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