Pay it Forward – Character Representations
10 Tuesday Mar 2009
Pay it Forward is a movie about society, and what each of us can do to improve it. Each character represents many different life lessons, and here are a few of them. Trevor represents giving, Eugene Simonet represents fear, Arlene represents desperation, Chris Chandler (Reporter) represents curiosity, and the stranger named Mr. Thorsen represents kindness.
Trevor McKinney had a very absorbent mind. He was ready to listen to anyone. Fortunately, the right person came along to guide him. Mr. Simonet gave him an assignment to change the world. Trevor created a unique concept called ‘Pay it Forward’. It consists of doing a large favor for 3 different people, and like a pyramid, spreading the word to each of them to do favors for 3 other strangers. Many people can think about doing something like this, but Trevor actually does it. It shows how truly giving he was. Under the toughest of circumstances, Trevor focused on helping others, and that is why he represented giving.
Eugene Simonet, Trevor’s Social Studies teacher, had great intentions for the world. He gave his class an assignment that involved changing the world for the better, but perhaps because of fear of doing it himself. In his relationship with Arlene, he showed great fear almost all of the time. This was due to his inability to let go of his past. It took drastic measures for Eugene Simonet to release his fear.
Arlene McKinney represented desperation. Most of her acts were done desperately, hoping for a better future. She worked 2 “informal” jobs, just to support Trevor and herself after her ex husband Ricky left her. When Ricky came back into her life, she took him back, because she was hoping for a return to normalcy. She preferred certainty in a bad relationship over uncertainty in a good relationship. Of course, this would change by the end of the movie.
Chris Chandler was a very inquisitive reporter. He represented curiosity, because he was willing to drive a long distance, just to find out information about a story. A story that will not make him any money. Chris was a very proactive person, only needing his own approval to take a certain action. His curiosity drove him to commit a good deed.
Finally, the stranger named Mr. Thorsen represented kindness. He gave his brand new Jaguar to Chris, just to pay it forward. A bit unrealistic, yes, but a great action to represent kindness. Being kind usually starts a positive chain reaction, and this kind deed by a stranger caused Chris to heighten his sense of curiosity about the ‘Pay it Forward’ situation.
If you are a fan of truly inspiring movies, then I am sure that “Pay it Forward” has a chance to be on your top movies list. Each character represents so many ideas, making it a very special movie. Although quite sad, “Pay it Forward” is sure to contain great life lessons for everyone.