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Finding Forrester

524 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Jamal Wallace (Robert Brown) is an inner-city kid from the Bronx who has an aptness at basketball and a genius at writing. While always a C student, Jamal comes to the attention of a prestigious New York prep school when he scores highly on his standardized tests. While Jamal is given a heavy load at his new school, both he and the school know that the real reason they took him on is for his prowess on the court. Befriended by fellow student Claire (Anna Paquin) and helped along by Pulitzer-prize winning author and recluse William Forrester (Sean Connery), Jamal pursues his dreams both on andoff the court while overcoming obstacles placed by his bitter literature teacher. As Jamal is shaped by Forrester, he finds that he is changing the old writer as well, forcing him to confront his past...and his future.

Special Features

  • HBO Making Of
  • Deleted Choir Scenes
  • "Found: Rob Brown" Featurette

Product Details

  • Actors: Sean Connery, Rob Brown, F. Murray Abraham, Anna Paquin, Matt Damon
  • Directors: Gus Van Sant
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Anamorphic, Closed-captioned, Color, Dolby, Dubbed, NTSC, Subtitled, Widescreen
  • Language: English (Dolby Digital 5.1), French (Dolby Digital 5.1)
  • Subtitles: English, French
  • Dubbed: French
  • Subtitles for the Hearing Impaired: English
  • Region: Region 1 encoding (US and Canada only)
    PLEASE NOTE:
    Some Region 1 DVDs may contain Regional Coding Enhancement (RCE). Some, but not all, of our international customers have had problems playing these enhanced discs on what are called "region-free" DVD players. For more information on RCE, click .
  • Aspect Ratio: 2.35:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: PG-13 (Parental Guidance Suggested)
  • Studio: Sony Pictures Home Entertainment
  • DVD Release Date: April 24, 2001
  • Run Time: 136 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (524 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B00005ASOC
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #49,404 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Finding Forrester" on IMDb

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

73 of 82 people found the following review helpful By Lawyeraau HALL OF FAMETOP 1000 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on June 18, 2001
Format: DVD
This is a heartwarming movie with fine performances by Sean Connery, newcomer Rob Brown, F. Murray Abraham, Michael Nouri, and Anna Pacquin. Well directed by Gus Van Sant, the film revolves around the two main characters, William Forrester, played by Sean Connery, and sixteen year old Kamal, played by Rob Brown.
William Forrester is a writer who, battling his own inner demons, has remained reclusive after writing a Pulitzer Prize winning novel some forty odd years earlier. Living alone in a changing neighborhood in the Bronx, he makes the acquaintance of Kamal, an intellectually gifted inner city kid, who plays street basketball, loves to write, and does both well.
A mentoring relationship springs between the two. Under Forrester's secret tutorship, Kamal blossoms. When Kamal's scholastic test scores come to the attention of a local prep school, school officials offer him a scholarship to attend and, if he chooses to do so, play basketball on the school team. The school also turns out to be William Forrester's alma mater, where he is revered and his prize winning novel is required reading.
There, Kamal encounters rank racism, all the more insidious because it is covert. F. Murray Abraham plays a teacher who is very similar to the character, Salieri, whom Abraham portrayed in the film "Amadeus". A failed writer who became a teacher, Abraham oozes racism as he contrives to destroy Kamal whom he accuses of plagirism, as he clearly believes him to be just another inner city, black basketball player who is incapable of anything more. He cannot seem to fathom that this kid could possibly write as well as he does, because he has Kamal stereotyped.
Yet, Kamal is actually all that he puports to be, a gifted writer who just also happens to play basketball.
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26 of 27 people found the following review helpful By D. Roberts VINE VOICE on August 4, 2001
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
Here is another well done off-the-mainstream movie that Hollywood decides to surprise us with every so often. It is a film which examines a curious friendship which is forged between a young black youth (Jamal, played by Rob Brown) and an aging, reclusive white author (William Forrester, played by Sean Connery).
The movie invokes the directorial talents of Gus Van Sant, and there are a few obvious parallels between it and "Good Will Hunting," also directed by Van Sant. To SOME extent, Jamal is the liberal arts counterpart to the math/science extraordinaire that Matt Damon played in "Hunting." However, while he is precocious, Jamal is not quite the "giant among giants" type of genius depicted in Damon's persona.
However, what Jamal is is a young, gifted youth who has a whole lot of potential. The one thing he lacked all his life was intellectual direction. He is well-read, but never had any one to help him hone his writing skills. After stumbling across a one-hit-wonder author (Forrester never attempted to publish a 2nd book), he comes to understand that he has found the catalyst for his future success as a serious writer.
This film succeeds brilliantly in its presentation of liberal arts as being an under-used nexus between societies, cultures and socio-economic classes. What keeps coming back again & again throughout the film is just how uniquely human the art of literature is. The fact that Jamal is an athelete as well as a scholar is a refreshing touch, especially considering how most Hollywood movies portray intellectuals as being stereotypical "nerds."
The one factor which precluded my giving this movie 5 stars was its articulation of the relationship between Jamal and Claire.
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25 of 27 people found the following review helpful By K. Wyatt on January 5, 2003
Format: DVD
In "Finding Forrester" you can find no better story! Finding Forrester is just a wonderful, melodramatic tale that is told from the heart and is quite uplifting. Sean Connery gives a stunning performance as an agoraphobic man devastated by personal loss. Newcomer Rob Brown's performance as an extremely intelligent, but held back by his surroundings youth is nothing less than outstanding and Anna Paquin whose performance is right on with her usual high standards.
The premise: MINOR SPOILER
The main character played by Rob Brown is an extraordinarily intelligent sixteen year old living in the South Bronx. As a dare, he is challenged to sneak into "the man in the window's" home and bring something out. Connery scares him out of his home, causing him to leave behind his book bag with all of his stories in it. After critiquing all of his work, Connery drops his book bag down on the street for him to recover. What follows from this point is the development of an unlikely relationship between two people from entirely different worlds. As Connery's character mentors Brown's character in his writing and during the young mans transition from an inner city school to a private school and Brown's character helps to bring Forrester out of his agoraphobic shell. {ssintrepid}
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14 of 14 people found the following review helpful By D. Keating on May 14, 2001
Format: VHS Tape
I rented this video mainly because of Sean Connery. I was pleasantly surprised: this is a great movie. It is somewhat similar to Good Will Hunting, but I found this plot more interesting, and less predictable.
The storyline basically follows the bond that forms between the two main characters. I think that the stark contrast between these two(old white reclusive man vs. young black charismatic boy) really adds an intesting angle to the story. The idea that two very different people can build a relatioship from a common passion (in this case writing) is a fascinating idea.
I also like the fact that the films does get into racial issues (stereotypes, mixed race couples, athletes and academics), but they do not form the nucleus of the plot. Instead, the film focuses more on what it becomes to become great in one's passion, and the risk required to develop a relationship with someone who isn't like you. The director does a great job weaving these two concepts together throughout the story.
I definitely recommend this movie to anyone who enjoyed Good Will Hunting. Also, if you are looking for a great movie that you might have missed while it was in the theatres- this is probably one of those.
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