To Sir, with Love (1967)
By Hervé St-Louis
February 12, 2022 - 12:51
Mark Thackeray, an engineer from British Guyana takes on a teaching job in an East London secondary school after having problem obtaining a position in his area of expertise. However, Thackeray is met with the rowdiest group of teenagers and rebels possible, while told repeatedly by colleagues that he’ll probably quit soon enough out of exhaustion. Can Thackeray inspire and steer his difficult class towards a better outcome, or will class, racial challenges, and other job opportunity take him away?
This film is one of the successes of just-defunct actor Sidney Poitier. It is a film that he decided to make after reading the original script by the man who authored the original book titled To Sir, with Love
, E.R. Braithwaite. We’ve seen inspiring movies of teachers in tough schools that can turn the tables and lead their pupils to better life outcomes, but this is one film that I did not know about. My film education is not particularly great, and this film was released before I was around!
I have not watched a Sidney Poitier movie in years and to be honest, it was so long ago that I was no longer familiar with the intensity of the actor. He’s incredible. His will shines throughout the film. He might have been an incredible person to be around on set and in real life. It also helps that I was unfamiliar with this film and expected some random and obscure movie he made on the side, not one of his most celebrated works. It was inspiring, as such movies usually are.
I loved the music and the score. I’m too young so I knew nothing about Lulu nor the Mindbenders. I realized later that I had heard other songs from the Mindbenders but that I had never thought about who might have sung these. The cinematography was crisp. Again, that was surprised as I expected the picture to be flaky and old. I loved this film, especially as a university professor. The Blu-ray version contains a lot of interviews and other documentaries. There is even a version with the score alone. It’s getting harder not to like this classic film.
Rating: 10 /10
Last Updated: February 12, 2022 - 12:56