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Encyclopedia > Dead Poets' Society
Dead Poets Society

original movie poster
Directed by Peter Weir
Produced by Silver Screen Partners IV
Touchstone Pictures
Paul Junger Witt
Tony Thomas
Written by Tom Schulman
Starring Robin Williams
Robert Sean Leonard
Ethan Hawke
Josh Charles
Gale Hansen
James Waterston
Norman Lloyd
Kurtwood Smith
Music by Maurice Jarre
Distributed by Buena Vista Pictures
Release date(s) June 2, 1989
Running time 128 min.
Language English
IMDb profile

Dead Poets Society is a 1989 film which tells the story of an English teacher at a 1950s boys' school who inspires his students to overcome their reluctance to make changes in their lives and stirs up their interests in poetry and literature. Image File history File links Download high resolution version (500x711, 203 KB)Dead Poets Society US DVD cover This image is of a DVD cover, and the copyright for it is most likely owned by either the publisher of the DVD or the studio which produced the DVD in question. ... Peter Weir (born August 21, 1944) is an Australian film director. ... The Touchstone lightning logo, used from 1986 to 2003. ... Paul Junger Witt is an American film and television producer. ... Charles Anthony Thomas is a TV and film producer, who has produced such TV series as Nurses, Hermans Head, Blossom, Empty Nest, Beauty and the Beast (series), Golden Girls, Heartland, and Its a Living, as well as the Robin Williams movie Dead Poets Society. ... Tom Schulman (born 1951 in Nashville) is an American screenwriter most famous for his screenplay Dead Poets Society which won the Best Screenplay Academy Award for 1989. ... This page refers to the actor and comedian. ... Robert Sean Leonard as Dr. James Wilson on House Robert Sean Leonard (born Robert Lawrence Leonard on February 28, 1969, in Westwood, New Jersey) is an American actor who is most noted for his role as an aspiring actor, Neil Perry, in the 1989 movie Dead Poets Society. ... Ethan Hawke Ethan Green Hawke (born November 6, 1970) is an American actor, writer and film director. ... Josh Charles as Dan Rydell in Sports Night Joshua Aaron Charles (born September 15, 1971) is an American stage, film and television actor. ... Norman Lloyd (b. ... Smith portraying Red Forman on That 70s Show Kurtwood Larson Smith (born July 3, 1943) is an American television and film character actor. ... Maurice Jarre (born in Lyon, France, September 13, 1924) is a French composer of film scores, noted for his use of the Ondes Martenot, and for the scores of many films including a series of David Lean films, Lawrence of Arabia, Doctor Zhivago (1965), Ryans Daughter (1970) and A... The Buena Vista Motion Pictures Group is a collection of affiliated motion picture studios, all subsidaries of The Walt Disney Company. ... June 2 is the 153rd day of the year in the Gregorian calendar (154th in leap years), with 212 days remaining. ... 1989 (MCMLXXXIX) was a common year starting on Sunday of the Gregorian calendar. ... 1989 (MCMLXXXIX) was a common year starting on Sunday of the Gregorian calendar. ... The 1950s was the decade spanning the years 1950 to 1959. ... The Chinese poem Quatrain on Heavenly Mountain by Emperor Gaozong. ... Old book bindings at the Merton College library. ...


The story is set at the fictional Welton Academy in Vermont and was filmed at St. Andrew's School in Delaware. A novelization by Nancy H. Kleinbaum based on the movie's script has also been published. Official language(s) None Capital Montpelier Largest city Burlington Area  Ranked 43rd  - Total 9,620 sq mi (24,923 km²)  - Width 80 miles (130 km)  - Length 160 miles (260 km)  - % water 3. ... St. ... Official language(s) None Capital Dover Largest city Wilmington Area  Ranked 49th  - Total 2,491 sq mi (6,452 km²)  - Width 30 miles (48 km)  - Length 100 miles (161 km)  - % water 21. ... A novelization (or novelisation in British English) is a work of fiction that is written based on some other media story form rather than as an original work. ...

Contents

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Plot

Eleven boys, Neil Perry (Robert Sean Leonard), Todd Anderson (Ethan Hawke), Knox Overstreet (Josh Charles), Charlie Dalton (Gale Hansen), Richard Cameron (Dylan Kussman), Steven Meeks (Allelon Ruggiero), Gerard Pitts (James Waterston), David Johnson, Tien Le, and Shawn Kittler attend the prestigious Welton Academy prep school, which is based on four principles: Tradition, Honor, Discipline and Excellence, and Mr. Beattie. According to the boys, the four pillars of "Hellton" are Travesty, Horror, Decadence, and Excrement. Robert Sean Leonard as Dr. James Wilson on House Robert Sean Leonard (born Robert Lawrence Leonard on February 28, 1969, in Westwood, New Jersey) is an American actor who is most noted for his role as an aspiring actor, Neil Perry, in the 1989 movie Dead Poets Society. ... Ethan Hawke Ethan Green Hawke (born November 6, 1970) is an American actor, writer and film director. ... Josh Charles as Dan Rydell in Sports Night Joshua Aaron Charles (born September 15, 1971) is an American stage, film and television actor. ... A university-preparatory school or college-preparatory school (usually abbreviated to preparatory school, college prep school, or prep school) is a private secondary school designed to prepare a student for higher education. ... The word tradition, comes from the Latin word traditio which means to hand down or to hand over. ... Honor (or honor) comprises the reputation, self-perception or moral identity of an individual or of a group. ... Discipline is any training intended to produce a specific character or pattern of behaviour, especially training that produces moral or mental development in a particular direction. ... This article is being considered for deletion in accordance with Wikipedias deletion policy. ... Burlesque was originally a form of art that mocked by imitation, referring to everything from comic sketches to dance routines and usually lampooning the social attitudes of upper classes. ... Horror is the feeling of dread and anticipation that usually occurs before something frightening is seen, heard, or otherwise experienced. ... Decadence generally refers to the supposed decline of a society because of moral weakness. ... Feces (also spelled faeces or fæces) are the waste products from the digestive tract expelled through the anus during defecation. ...


Among the teachers the boys meet on their first day of class is the new English teacher, John Keating (played by Robin Williams), who tells the students that they can call him "O Captain! My Captain!" (the title of a Walt Whitman poem) if they feel daring. His first lesson is unorthodox by Welton standards, taking them out of the classroom to focus on the idea of carpe diem (Latin for 'seize the day'). In a later class Keating has one of the boys read the introduction to their poetry textbook, a staid essay entitled "Understanding Poetry" by the fictional academic Dr. J. Evans-Pritchard, Ph.D., which describes how to place the quality of a poem on a scale, and rate it with a number, a process that was popular in literary circles at the time. Keating finds the idea of such mathematical literary criticism ridiculous and encourages his pupils to rip the introductory essay out of their textbooks. After a brief reaction of disbelief, they do so gleefully as Keating congratulates them with the memorable line "Begone, J. Evans-Pritchard, Ph.D.". Eventually he also has the students stand on his desk as a reminder to look at the world in a different way. This page refers to the actor and comedian. ... Facimilie of the Authors Proof. ... Walt Whitman Walter Walt Whitman (May 31, 1819 – March 26, 1892) is widely considered to be one of Americas best and most influential poets. ... Carpe diem is a Latin phrase literally meaning pluck the day but usually translated as seize the day. It is often adopted (or at least quoted) as a personal motto. ... Latin was the language originally spoken in the region around Rome called Latium. ...


The rest of the movie is a process of awakening, in which the boys (and the audience) discover that authority can and must always act as a guide, but the only place where one can find out his true identity is within himself. To that end, the boys secretly revive an old literary club to which Mr. Keating was a member called the Dead Poets Society. One of the boys, Charlie Dalton, takes this a bit too far and publishes an article in the school flyer about why girls should be allowed at Welton, which is implying to give the boys more fantasies. However, when the faculty learns of its existence, they demand to know who is involved to punish them for subverting the school. To add insult to injury, Charlie receives a "phone call from God" in front of Headmaster Nolan, who personally punishes him with a paddle and warns him that he had better be the only one involved. Charlie denies anybody else and says that he acted alone.

This free thinking brings trouble for one of the boys, Neil, who decides to pursue acting (something he loves and is very good at), rather than medicine (the career his strict father (Kurtwood Smith) chose for him). Mr. Keating urges Neil to tell his father how he feels before starring in a play, a Shawn Kittler production of A Midsummer Night's Dream in which Neil had the role of Puck, but he could not bear facing his father (a highly dictatorial man). Neil's brilliant performance fails to please his father, who, instead, tells Neil of his plans to pull him out of Welton (and acting) and to enroll him in Braden Military School to prepare him for Harvard and a career in medicine. Unable to cope with his feelings and stand up to his father, Neil commits suicide with his father's revolver. Image File history File links D_p_s. ... Smith portraying Red Forman on That 70s Show Kurtwood Larson Smith (born July 3, 1943) is an American television and film character actor. ... A Midsummer Nights Dream is a romantic comedy by William Shakespeare written sometime in the mid-1590s. ...


As a consequence of Neil's suicide, Mr. Nolan holds an investigation into the tragedy to find the responsible culprits. Mr. Nolan gets help from at least one of the students, Richard Cameron. When Charlie Dalton finds out that Cameron has squealed on them, he furiously attacks his former friend, only to get expelled from Welton.


All the boys confess what Keating has taught them, and Todd, who is coerced to do so by his strict father, also signs a confession casting blame on his former teacher. Keating is fired and forced to leave Welton Academy after he retrieves his belongings.


The film concludes with the boys, led by the previously very timid Todd Anderson, standing on their desks — in front of Mr. Nolan, in open defiance — calling to Mr. Keating, "O Captain! My Captain!" to show him that his messages have been understood and appreciated. With tears in his eyes, Keating says "Thank you, boys. Thank you," and the film ends on a high, but uncertain note, with the viewer wondering what would become of Keating and the boys who supported him.

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Alternative ending

The original ending was that Keating was dying of leukemia , hence his 'carpe diem' philosophy. Mr. Perry sues both Keating for corrupting Neil, and the school for compensation and emotional suffering. Todd and the other 'Dead Poets' are told by Mr. Nolan to testify against Keating, in exchange for a clean record of any wrongdoing. Cameron is the only one who testifies against his former teacher, feeling that the school needs a scapegoat. Instead, the rest of the boys defend him and explain that Neil chose to act on his own beliefs rather than be influenced. Keating is acquitted of all charges, much to the fury of Mr. Perry, who spends his last years in depression and sorrow over the loss of his hopes for Neil and his "legacy." The boys are put on disciplinary probation, while Keating goes into hospital as his condition worsens. At the end of the film, Keating dies feeling that he has made a difference in the boys' lives. The director changed the script to emphasize more the boys' personal journey, but he has stated that he wished he had gone with the original ending.[1] Leukemia (or leukaemia; see spelling differences) is a cancer of the blood or bone marrow characterized by an abnormal proliferation of blood cells, usually white blood cells (leukocytes). ... The scapegoat was a goat that was driven off into the wilderness as part of the ceremonies of Yom Kippur, the Day of Atonement, in Judaism during the times of the Temple in Jerusalem. ...

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Awards and nominations

It won the Academy Award for Writing Original Screenplay, and was nominated for Best Actor in a Leading Role (Robin Williams), Best Director and Best Picture. This movie ranked number 20 on Entertainment Weekly's list of the 50 Best High School Movies.) The Academy Award for Writing Original Screenplay is the Academy Award for the best script not based upon previously published material. ... The Academy Award for Best Actor is one of the awards given to people working in the motion picture industry by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences; nominations are made by Academy members who are actors and actresses. ... The Academy Award for Directing is an accolade given to the person that the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences feels was best director of the past year. ... // The Academy Award for Best Motion Picture is one of the Academy Awards, awards given to people working in the motion picture industry by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, which are voted on by others within the industry. ... June 17, 2005 cover of Entertainment Weekly, featuring actor Tom Cruise Entertainment Weekly is a magazine published by Time Warner in the United States which is dedicated to the world of celebrity and popular culture. ...

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Trivia & Goofs

  • The introductory essay which Keating has his students read from their poetry textbook near the beginning of the movie is actually taken nearly word-for-word from an early chapter of Laurence Perrine's Sound and Sense: An Introduction to Poetry, which is still occasionally used by AP English classes in the United States.
  • Bill Murray and Dustin Hoffman were both considered for the role of John Keating. Before Peter Weir came on the project, Liam Neeson had the role before he was recast with Williams.
  • Robert Sean Leonard went on to play a doctor in the TV show House, just as Mr. Perry had wanted Neil to become a doctor.
  • The film has become standard viewing for many high school English classes in North America.
  • In one scene, a bagpipe player stands on the docks in the middle of the night. The song played is titled The Fields of Athenry, which tells the story of a man who stood up against 'the famine' and 'the crown' and was arrested for it. This can relate to the boys who stood up against the school and were punished, even though they did it for the right reasons. (The song is often taken to be a very old ballad, but was actually composed in the 1970's, while the film is set in the 1950's; it is an anachronism).
  • Director Peter Weir chose to shoot the film in chronological order to better capture the development of the relationships between the boys and their growing respect for Mr. Keating.
  • Charlie Dalton writes his poem on the centerfold of Elaine Reynolds, Miss October 1959.
  • The uniform of Welton Academy shares similarities to that of director Weir's high school, The Scots' College, including the use of the rampant lion on blazer breast pocket. The difference is that Welton uses red and blue, while Scots' uses a gold and blue colour system.
  • The quote of Henry David Thoreau read at the beginning of each meeting is incorrect. It actually reads "I went to the woods because I wished to live deliberately, to front only the essential facts of life, and see if I could not learn what it had to teach, and not, when I came to die, discover that I had not lived. … I did not wish to live what was not life, living is so dear; nor did I wish to practise [sic] resignation, unless it was quite necessary. I wanted to live deep and suck out all the marrow of life, to live so sturdily and Spartan-like as to put to rout all that was not life, to cut a broad swath and shave close, to drive life into a corner… (61)" (Thoreau, Walden, 1854).
  • The line that Keating refers to from Whitman's poem "Song of Myself" is misquoted. The line actually reads "I sound my barbaric yawp over the roofs of the world".
  • Mr. Keating's pants actually fell down during a scene, but the scene was immediately reshot.
[edit]

The Advanced Placement Program, commonly known as Advanced Placement, or AP, is a United States and Canada-based program that offers high school students the opportunity to receive university credit for their work during high school. ... University of Connecticut The University of Connecticut, commonly known as UConn, is the State of Connecticuts land-grant university. ... Sam Pickering . Samuel F. Pickering is professor of English at the University of Connecticut in Storrs. ... Montgomery Bell Academy (often referred to as MBA) is a preparatory day school for boys in grades 7 through 12 in Nashville, Tennessee. ... Extra extra bill muray is fucken gay motherfucker William James Bill Murray (born September 21, 1950) is an Academy Award-nominated, Emmy-winning and Golden Globe-winning American comedian and actor. ... This article or section does not cite its references or sources. ... William John Liam Neeson OBE, born in Ballymena, Ireland on the 7th of June, 1952, is an Oscar-nominated Northern Irish actor. ... Robert Sean Leonard as Dr. James Wilson on House Robert Sean Leonard (born Robert Lawrence Leonard on February 28, 1969, in Westwood, New Jersey) is an American actor who is most noted for his role as an aspiring actor, Neil Perry, in the 1989 movie Dead Poets Society. ... House, also known as House, M.D., is an American medical drama television series created by David Shore and executive produced by film director Bryan Singer. ... Goodbye, Mr. ... James Hilton (September 9, 1900 - December 20, 1954) was a popular English novelist of the first half of the 20th century. ... Electronic mailing lists are a special usage of e-mail that allows for widespread distribution of information to many Internet users. ... The DRS flag includes a smiley emoticon (symbolizing computers) and a star (symbolizing the Lone Star State of Texas) where the group was founded in 1991 The Dead Runners Society (DRS) is a worldwide online running club. ... The Fields of Athenry is a song about the Irish Potato Famine, which was composed in the 1970s by Pete St. ... Look up Anachronism in Wiktionary, the free dictionary. ... A Change Of Seasons is a 1995 EP by progressive metal band Dream Theater. ... EP can stand for: EP is the IATA code for Iran Aseman Airlines Extended play, a music recording (usually consisting of several tracks, but shorter than a typical album) European Parliament, the parliamentary body of the European Union Evolutionary psychology, a belief that psychology can be better understood in light... Progressive metal is a genre of heavy metal music which shares traits with progressive rock including use of complex compositional structures, odd time signatures, and intricate instrumental playing. ... Dream Theater is a progressive metal band, formed by three students at the Berklee College of Music in 1985. ... For other schools with a similar name see Scotch College. ... Henry David Thoreau Henry David Thoreau (July 12, 1817 – May 6, 1862; born David Henry Thoreau) was an American author, development critic, naturalist, transcendentalist, pacifist, tax resister and philosopher who is most famous for his written account, Walden, a reflection upon simple living amongst nature, and his essay, Civil Disobedience... Thoreaus Cove, Concord, Mass. ...

References & Further reading

  1. ^ http://imdb.com/title/tt0097165/trivia
  • Munaretto, Stefan (2005). Erläuterungen zu Nancy H. Kleinbaum/Peter Weir, 'Der Club der toten Dichter'. Hollfeld: Bange. ISBN 3804418171.
  • Perrine, Laurence (1963). Sound and sense: an introduction to poetry. New York: Harcourt, Brace & World.
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External links

Wikiquote has a collection of quotations related to:
Dead Poets Society


Image File history File links Wikiquote-logo-en. ... Wikiquote logo Wikiquote is a sister project of Wikipedia, using the same MediaWiki software. ... The Internet Movie Database (IMDb) is an online database of information about actors, films, television shows, video games and production crew personnel. ...

Films Directed by Peter Weir
Homesdale | The Cars That Ate Paris | Picnic at Hanging Rock | The Last Wave | Gallipoli | The Year of Living Dangerously | Witness | The Mosquito Coast | Dead Poets Society | Green Card | Fearless | The Truman Show | Master and Commander: The Far Side of the World | War Magician | Pattern Recognition

  Results from FactBites:
 
'Dead Poets Society' (381 words)
In "Dead Poets Society," Peter Weir's (and screenwriter Tom Schulman's) touching private-school requiem for free thinking, he is the English teacher -- come to shake the Academy down, come to show 'em that somewhere among the three Rs is an immensely pleasurable P for poetry.
"Poets" is about his influence, or teacher John Keating's influence, on a crop of impressionable young lads at Vermont's "Welton Academy" (actually Delaware's St. Andrew's), where learning is something you take twice daily, so you can wake up a doctor in the morning.
"Poets' " conclusion, a tragic affair, is foreshadowed early in the syllabus -- but if you've lived more than five minutes (and they won't let you into the theater otherwise), you already know that most romantic flights of fancy inevitably crash-land.
Dead Poets Society (1989) (500 words)
Dead Poets Society is a thoroughly moving, and inspiring film from Peter Weir, who is definitely one of the most under rated directors around.
This movie is in the same vein as "A Separate Peace", in the sense of setting, and in the general coming of age story line.
The basic message is to "suck the marrow out of life", as the passage for the society reads, or to live every moment to the fullest.
  More results at FactBites »

 
 

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