After a very lazy Holiday Season, full of wine & regret, I am back with my Reel of the Week. This week is off my favorites list. It's 1967's TO SIR WITH LOVE".
It's the 60's and Mark Thackery (Sidney Poitier) is a Black man, trying to get along ,and get a job in the field of engineering. Again and again, the Color wall rears it's ugly head. So when he is offered a job teaching troubled High School students in a poor neighborhood, he jumps at the chance of employment.
His first day of school he is confronted with a classroom full of surly, brash, irrepressible teens, who in a years time be unleashed into the World with no grasp of what awaits them.
Thakery feels in over his head and the students mask their uncertainty at his presence, with bravado and an escalation of unruly behavior, hoping to scare him off like previous teachers. Thackery has experienced worse in his day to day life as a Black man so steels himself for the battle ahead.
After weeks of following the rules and being met with alternating apathy and rudeness, Thackery decides to throw convention to the wind and look to the Students instead of the books for the curriculum. The surprise is that both the Students & Thackery learn new lessons.
I watch TO SIR WITH LOVE at least once or twice a year. It is a relevant today as it was in 1967. I don't know what that says about our society, but when I watch it,I'm filled with a mixture of nostalgia, sadness and awe that this movie from 1967 dealt more honestly with racism then a lot of current movies. I also become a complete emotional wreck when I watch it. I hope that some of you who have not seen TO SIR WITH LOVE will give it a try. It also boast a great Soundtrack with the song of the same name, sung by Lulu. The song alone brings a tear.