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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A fitting au revoir
Although he did another one or two films before his formal retirement, this is as good a swan song as the splendid old so-and-so deserves. Playing a character based so obviously on J D Salinger he even has the same number of syllables in his name(!) but it's all good fun - to the extent that the film really only seems to move forward when Connery is on screen...
Published on 16 Nov 2007 by m

versus
6 of 8 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars well-crafted, but not original and deep enough
I must say that "Finding Forrester" is fairly satisfactory movie about friendship, romance, basketball, literature and books. Technically, everything about it seems pretty good: great sets, effective performances, excellent script, nice musical scores (especially Jazz songs by Miles Davis), highly enjoyable scenes and some stylish shots (especially those taken by handheld...
Published on 24 Jun 2007 by Serkan Silahsor


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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A fitting au revoir, 16 Nov 2007
By 
m "macey" (United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)    (REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Finding Forrester [DVD] (DVD)
Although he did another one or two films before his formal retirement, this is as good a swan song as the splendid old so-and-so deserves. Playing a character based so obviously on J D Salinger he even has the same number of syllables in his name(!) but it's all good fun - to the extent that the film really only seems to move forward when Connery is on screen.

But...it's all a bit too contrived for my taste, to many Hollywood coincidences in the script - plus Van Sant had only directed Good Will Hunting a few years earlier and this film suffers (as most would) by comparison to that. It's the sense of going back to the well one time to many.

Major gripe - the story goes on too long (SPOILER SPOLIER SPOILER!)and there's no need really to have most of the scenes after the death of Forrester - the end shot in my mind always comes back to Forrester cycling off through the heavy daytime city traffic, in his suit and coat, completely out of place but enjoying the world again.

To me, it's better that a million `Shaken, not stirred' clips in giving us a fond farewell to Mr Connery. May his tartan retirement be restful..
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13 of 15 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Watch This!, 2 Oct 2001
By A Customer
This review is from: Finding Forrester [DVD] [2001] (DVD)
Finding Forrester is one of those movies that comes along every now and then. It seemed to arrive without much fanfare and I wonder why. Why is something this good not given a big promotional tour, lots of publicity and a lot of glitz? The truth is - it doesn't need it. What a film needs is a great script, tight direction, excellent leads and "something". The "something" in this film is the spark between Forrester and Jamal. It's the rancour between Jamal and the teacher (played exquisitely by F Murray Abraham). And, it's the fledgling friendship between a girl and a boy.
Quite simply it's a wonder. Sean Connery turns in another seemingly effortless performance. (I'm biased, as I'm from Edinburgh, but I think it's the best thing he's done since "The Man Who Would be King".) Rob Brown (as Jamal) isn't dwarfed by Connery's performance and turns in something eyecatching himself. F Murray Abraham, always worth watching, gives us plenty to dislike as Jamal's snobbish teacher. Anna Paquin fared well as Jamal's school friend - but this could have been expanded on a bit more.
However, don't just read this review. Watch the film. You won't regret it.
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6 of 8 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars well-crafted, but not original and deep enough, 24 Jun 2007
By 
This review is from: Finding Forrester [DVD] (DVD)
I must say that "Finding Forrester" is fairly satisfactory movie about friendship, romance, basketball, literature and books. Technically, everything about it seems pretty good: great sets, effective performances, excellent script, nice musical scores (especially Jazz songs by Miles Davis), highly enjoyable scenes and some stylish shots (especially those taken by handheld cameras).

Thanks to Gus Van Sant, the film features an exquisite representation of human element and strong character development. BUT, it ultimately suffers too much from lack of originality and helluva of predictability. Most of the plot is cliché-drenched, hollywoodized and utterly predictable from beginning to end.

The premise is quite identical (though not the same) with Van Sant's 1997 Oscar-winning "Good Will Hunting": a prodigy (with extraordinary talents in basketball and writing) meets and enters into a relationship with another gifted but reclusive old man, actually a brilliant Pulitzer-winning novelist who built a cocoon around himself and shutting his door to the outside world more than 40 years. Old man needs a company from outside, while prodigy needs a mentor to help him focus his intellect in writing at school, and all along that mentor-protégé relationship, both learn and grow from the experience.

If you like movies with slow beginnings but fast endings, AND don't mind being exposed to lots of "Hollywood Moments", "Finding Forrester" would be an excellent piece of picture worth watching.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Very entertaining., 5 July 2007
This review is from: Finding Forrester [DVD] (DVD)
I can't add anything to the first two reviews which are fairly accurate regarding content although my only observation is ,that I ask myself was I entertained? and yes I was! I loved the the way the film delt with a number of very important social issues ie; arrogance, pride, racisim, bullying, face saving,rivalry, jealousy,sentiment,loyalty,forgiveness and of course the list goes on.The point is that it was made for entertainment and if you pay too much attention to detail (too many convenient co-incidences which incidentally I had not even noticed.)You miss the point I feel the film was not overstreched in its believeability and certainly achieved its aim.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Bigotry is no creative writing, 10 Dec 2009
By 
This review is from: Finding Forrester [DVD] (DVD)
This film is a lot more than the story of a black boy from the Bronx finding his full realization in both basket-ball and creative writing. This film is a lot more than the skimming of black public high schools by white private high school to find the winning sportsmen they need. This film is a lot more than the story of a black teenager who finds his mentor, a father substitute since he has no father and his elder brother is not the model he wants, in a famous and yet totally marginal writer, Scottish by origin and bird-loving by choice and passion. This film is a lot more than the exacting tyrant a failed writer can become when he decides to compensate his failure in writing by becoming a creative writing and literature teacher. And this film is also a lot more than the phenomenal emotional shock it is for an aging man, diagnosed with cancer, entirely solitary and marginalized to find by accident and the insistence on the side of the foundling, the younger man who is going to be his follow-up next generation. He gets out of his cocoon. He gets out of his seclusion. Even so much that he will save his foundling from academic probation and even open up the door to his future. This film is all that together and a lot more. It is the story of loyalty, commitment and yet betrayal and salvation. Deeply emotional all along the film gets to a poignant ending when the death of the older man is announced by a lawyer to the younger man, and when this younger man is given the full legacy of the older man: the keys to the older man's den and sanctuary in the Bronx, a final farewell manuscript letter and the manuscript of his second and posthumous novel to be prefaced by the younger man. The racial problem is dealt with delicately but thoroughly showing how little race has to do with creative imagination, or even plain human love, but also that it has a lot to do with some preconceived ideas that a black basket ball player cannot be a creative writer of any excellence. A film to watch several times just for fun and emotional inspiration. You can always trace and track all the visual or situational allusions to many other films, like Matt Damon as a young lawyer. I have seen that somewhere else. Solve the many riddles of the type like the older man on his old fashioned bike cycling to the private school to save his black younger friend from ostracism and rejection. He just misses a black gown flying around him.

Dr Jacques COULARDEAU, University Paris 1 Pantheon Sorbonne, University Paris 8 Vincennes Saint Denis, University Paris 12 Val de Marne Créteil, CEGID.
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5 of 7 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars HIGHLY ABSORBING...SEAN CONNERY IS A NATIONAL TREASURE..., 12 Feb 2003
By 
Lawyeraau (Balmoral Castle) - See all my reviews
(HALL OF FAME REVIEWER)    (TOP 500 REVIEWER)   
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 plagiarism, 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 purports to be, a gifted writer who just also happens to play basketball. Truly scholarly, he shows up his teacher in class, only to further exacerbate his enmity. This teacher's dislike and covert racism manifests itself in the exclusion of Kamal's entry in the prestigious writing competition sponsored by the prep school. This situation comes to a head when the teacher's racism is exposed for what it is in a stunning, surprising climax.
Kamal, however, is not the only one to have a moment of redemption in the movie. Forrester, too, has that moment as he comes to grips with his past, the past that made him shut the world out for so long. It is his friendship with Kamal that illuminates his return to the very world from which he had withdrawn long ago.
This film is about a friendship that is borne out of a shared passion. It is about the old nurturing the young. It is about passing the baton from one generation to the next. It is a film the transcends age and race. It is a film for everyone.
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3.0 out of 5 stars Reclusive writer mentors young guy, Again., 13 July 2014
By 
A. Stratton - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Finding Forrester (DVD)
Nothing new here; all a bit of a cliché. Repetetive and overlong. Nevertheless, an entertaining movie, with a good performance from Sean Connery and an excellent one from Rob Brown.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Fascinating, 9 April 2012
This review is from: Finding Forrester [DVD] [2001] (DVD)
A real treat, a hidden gem. I have seen this around but never got to watch it.
Just watched it and I was really impressed, reminded me a bit about Good Will Hunting.
Very highly recommended!
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5.0 out of 5 stars Finding Fault, 23 Feb 2012
By 
J (United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
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Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Finding Forrester [DVD] [2001] (DVD)
So the film is 11 years old now, so what. You are soon thrown into the very different lives of the characters and wonder where it will all end up. Just brilliant.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Great story line that shows the barriers & misconceptions we ..., 21 Aug 2014
Really enjoyable...Great story line that shows the barriers & misconceptions we all face in everyday life. We all face being stuck but watching films like this remind me that we have the abilities to move forward and embrace new comfort zones.
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Finding Forrester [DVD] [2001]
Finding Forrester [DVD] [2001] by Gus Van Sant (DVD - 2001)
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