|What made Dead Poet Society commendable to Objectivists? We might say that Robert White is a mere student of Objectivism, so this movie is not truly good enough for us. |
But I do not think that is accurate or fair. The consistent good to great endorsements all over the WWW as well as here show that the movie certainly resonated with the highest ideals of many people. I recommended the movie Sky Captain and the World of Tomorrow and I actually expected to take a few hits on that, but got a few points instead. The movie had some internal problems. (I think it failed to establish its universe.) Still, it was gripping -- and other thinkers here agreed.
If I can speak of "deconstructionism" and "gestalt" without being accused of post-modernism, I believe that on the one hand, we must look at the elements to understand the entity, but that ultimately, every "thing" is what it is on its own terms: Das Ding an sich. How you evaluate a person, a book, a movie, an animal, a plant, or rock either at your feet or in outer space, depends on your morality. Personally, I think that most of Ayn Rand's favorite "bootleg" was swill. However, there is no denying what it meant to her. She wrote cogently and unarguably about the value in what she enjoyed and why.
If Dead Poet Society does not move you, then it does not. Condemning the characterizations for being unworkable is fine. If the kids seemed unreal to you, then that is where it ends for you. If you were to say that you liked the work generally because it showed the true futility of life but that the "My Captain!" at the end ruined it, well, that says something about who you are. If -- like most people -- you liked it because it reflected your own passion for "sucking the marrow without choking on the bone" then that says something else.
But there is "none of the above."
Art is like that.
(Edited by Michael E. Marotta on 8/03, 4:08am)