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Featuring: Hilary Swank, Imelda Staunton, Patrick Dempsey, Scott Glenn, See full list
Description: Erin Gruwell (Hillary Swank) is an ambitious 23-year old who has just landed a position as a teacher at a High School in one of the roughest urban California neighborhoods. She is assigned a group of students that have been deemed “unteachable,” but is hopeful about helping them make progress. Unsurprisingly, she is met with both ambivalence and hostility, but her fearless determination helps her find the right approach. When she introduces the kids to literature about the Holocaust, she finds that the majority is completely unaware of the tragic events that transpired decades ago. Her lectures on the harrowing history open up levels of consciousness the students have never experienced before. Eye-opening stories of violence, injustice, and intolerance help the kids find parallels in their own lives and inspire them to seek escape from their miserable environment. Erin encourages her students to start writing about their own experiences and through their awe-inspiring confessions the students achieve an overwhelming level of self-satisfaction. All 150 of them go on to graduate from school and eventually attend college.