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Pay It Forward A Biblical Comparison

2097 words - 9 pages

Pay It Forward - A Biblical Comparison"Do unto others as you would have them do unto you." This is what we know as the golden rule. In today's society, it seems to have been altered just a tad - "Do unto other's before they do unto you." Albeit a negative connotation, it can be turned one hundred eighty degrees into a positive thought and gesture. The movie Pay It Forward does just that. This movie tells the story of a social studies teacher who gives an assignment to his junior high school class to think of an idea to change the world for the better, and then put it into action. Movie critic David Bruce remarked, "When one young student, Trevor McKinney, creates a plan for "paying forward" ...view middle of the document...

.. just as Trevor sticks with him.Pay it Forward 4Arlene, Trevor's mother, was considered the hearth keeper. She was a single mother and was willing to work at any job to protect and care for Trevor. Trevor filled the shoes of the hero. After all, it was his idea of "pay it forward" that spread throughout the nation and gave hope to countless thousands. In the end, Trevor became the scapegoat in that he gave his life to defend his friend Sean.The situational archetypes are also rather forthcoming. First, the quest was set in the first five minutes of the movie. The social studies assignment was the quest. The task was the idea of "Pay it Forward". Secondly, the initiation was almost immediate. Trevor knew what he must do before he left class that day. Third and finally, the death and rebirth was when Trevor was literally killed by a classmate. Interestingly enough, even though he did not physically come back to life, Trevor's "Pay It Forward" theory kept him alive. Moreover, his life and memory werePay it Forward 5uniquely patronized at the end of the movie when the entire town lined up in Trevor's front yard in a candlelight vigil. People and cars were lined up as far as the eye could see.The protagonist symbolism began when Mr. Simonet, the Social Studies teacher, introduced the opportunity for Trevor to accept the project, or the call to adventure, to ""Think of an idea to change the world and put it into action". (Abrams, 2000) The first threshold was when Trevor found a homeless man, Jerry, and brought him home to feed him. Was this a life or death situation for Trevor? Probably not, however, Trevor's overcoming this first hurdle sent his idea into action. As a result, Trevor's idea was proven successful when Jerry was caught repairing Trevor's mom's vehicle. Jerry told her, "...because of her son's kindness, he was just paying it forward." (Abrams, 2000) Likewise, the road of trials is quite noticeable. After Trevor helped Jerry, he later found out that Jerry was taking drugs again. That was strikePay it Forward 6one for Trevor's idea. Also, Trevor tried to get his mother and Mr. Simonet to fall in love. Seemingly, that appeared to fail as well. That was strike two for the pay it forward theory. Lastly, Trevor tried to help his friend, Sean, from getting beat up at school. The result seemed to be the same as the other two situations, failure. In the eyes of Trevor, that was strike three. In spite of what had appeared to have happened, two of the three "deeds", a love relationship with his mother and Mr. Simonet, as well as Sean's overcoming the school bullies, do eventually come true so his theory is quite a success. As you can see, this film was heavy laden with archetypical and situational symbolism.In addition to the literary symbolism, the religious symbolism and biblical parallels were quite astounding. Particular events stood out immediately. Trevor was killed by a stab wound to his right side, just as Jesus was. He diedPay it Forward...

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