Finding Forrester addresses the lives of two people, Jamal Wallace; a brilliant young African-American high
school student and basketball player, and William Forrester; an author who became reclusive after the death
of his alcoholic brother and also his parents. Forrester is an award winning author who wrote only one book four decades ago before the
incident that made him start living a reclusive life. On the other hand, Wallace is a high school student whom
after getting high scores on his test and also his brilliance on the court gets noticed by an elite Manhattan
prep school; Mailor-Callow who offers him a scholarship to study at their school and also play basketball.
Wallace ...view middle of the document...
And also further on a condition that is not allowed to show whatever he writes in
Forrester’s apartment to anyone. When a writing competition comes up and Wallace is required to submit an
essay, he submits one of the essays of Forrester he re-wrote. Unbeknownst to him, the original article by
Forrester was published. Professor Robert Crawford the English teacher who doesn’t believe in Wallace’s
writing prowess and sees the latter as just being recruited into the school to please the school board by
winning basketball games.
After Wallace has a fall-out with Crawford, the latter seeks some sort of revenge by trying to prove that
Wallace cheated on the essay he submitted for the competition, and after much research he finally comes
across the published work of William Forrester which has the same topic has the paper Wallace had handed
in. Although admitting that the work of the teenager was original, the topic of the work would be treated as
plagiarism charges and his options were to provide a proof of Forrester’s permission to use his material or to
admit Foresters’ influence on his work. He refuses to do either because of the promise he had made to
Forrester. This decision makes him get removed from the competition and he is faced with expulsion. When
he tells Forrester about the incident that occurred and asks for his help out of the dilemma, the latter becomes
angry and refuses. Wallace is later approached and told that his plagiarism charge could be dropped as long
as he wins the basketball championship for the school. During the game, a foul occurred. It is implied in the
film that Wallace intentionally lost the two free throws when he realizes that his academic intellect and
contribution to the school do not matter and all the school board wants him to do is just play basketball and
win games. On the day of the essay competition, Wallace still shows up and no sooner much to everyone’s
surprise Forrester shows up in the school after he reads a letter to him by Wallace delivered to his apartment
the night before by Wallace’s elder brother. Forrester reads an essay in front of all the students and school
board. When he is done reading, he receives praise and accolades from Crawford only for him to clarify that
it was written by Wallace and goes on to further clear the teenager from his charges by saying he had given
him permission to use his idea.
At the end of the film, Forrester declares his intention to go back to his home country Scotland. A year later
when Wallace is in his senior year, Forrester’s attorney comes to deliver the news of the passing away of
Forrester who had left the keys to his apartment and rights to his unpublished works to Wallace in his will.
This essay is used to outline how sociological concepts such as Class, Discrimination and Age are relevant in
the film “Finding Forrester” and how they affect the lives of characters in the film.
Firstly, the theme of...