Higher Learning This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine.

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   Higher Learning, an unsettling movie? This movie went completely beyond the genre of entertainment. No one could sit through this film without feeling some kind of emotion.

John Singleton, director/producer of the much talked about Boyz N The Hood, as well as Poetic Justice, has again astounded audiences with his portrayal of life in America.

Although the movie did not receive quite as high ratings (according to Siskel and Ebert) as The Lion King, this movie, as its title suggests was not meant to entertain but to educate.

Singleton deliberately creates a world of extremes. It is through this the viewer is able to easily recognize, should he choose to, the futility of racial and gender injustice and prejudice.

From beginning to end, the movie packs an emotional punch. The push and pull of actions and reactions is strong enough to keep the viewer on edge.

It is possible to watch this movie from three perspectives: one of artistic value, entertainment value, or of the message it seeks to unfold.

Artistically, John Singleton has created a masterpiece in which a picture says a thousand words. He creates a sense of tremendous, almost cruel irony by recurring scenes, music, and use of white and black outs.

The film follows Poe's "gun on the wall" theory creating an intricate plot for those who wish no more than entertainment while allowing detail upon detail to strengthen the moral of the story.

As witness to the many acts of violence based on race, gender and sexual preference, the viewer receives a call to action. Higher Learning portrays many methods of dealing with prejudice forcing the viewer to find for himself a solution to prejudice in his own life.

The message is clearly given. The film displays the prejudices within our own minds. The movie concludes, with the word "unlearn" superimposed on the American flag. Whether we recognize and face the truth is our choice.

This is one film everyone must see. .




This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. This piece has been published in Teen Ink’s monthly print magazine.






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