In this paper, I will be analyzing the interpersonal communication in the movie The Blind Side, between Michael (the protagonist) and some of the essential characters of the film. It is a movie based on the real-life story of Michael Oher, an Afro-American football player, and his struggles from being an abandoned kid growing up in a foster home to a thriving NFL (National Football League) player after being adopted by the family of the Tuohy’s. In my opinion, the only reason why ‘The Blind Side’ is such a fantastic story is the fact that it narrates the real-life story of an Afro-American boy with little or no prospects. Comparing to the text, it is a movie full of relationship maintenance.
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In this paper, I will be discussing the concepts of intercultural communication, self-concept, and relational maintenance. To begin with the first concept, I will be discussing is “intercultural communication”. Michael was from an entirely different race. Therefore, his interaction not only with others in public but also with his new family is not friendly. For example, when Michael goes to the public school for the very first time, other students avoid him. Fear influenced the relationship between Michael and the rest of the school. His teachers were starting to give up on him except for a couple of them, and he didn’t have any friends until he met Sean Junior. It wasn’t until he started living with the Tuohy’s that he began to get accepted by students and his teachers. Also, if it weren’t for his history teacher introducing another way to teach him he would have been a total mess. His other teachers didn’t care about him and just let him go until he failed.
There were also differences in the living environment Michael was used as he lived in a ghetto area earlier with his un-caring mother. They (Michael and his mother) were poor, and whatever money they had were wasted by his mother to fulfill her drug cravings. Living with the Tuohy’s, Michael was starting to get a taste of the good life. The second concept is self-concept (Self-concept, page 70). Ann Tuohy meets criticism from her friends as to what she is doing with a black boy she calls her son. She tells them why Michael needs a foster family. Success from any angle of life determines Michael on the other hand despite his poverty and not an academic giant.
His optimism in life makes him utilize the opportunity he got and became successful in academic, sports and social life. In the beginning, Ann was being a nice person and wanted to help Michael. Even though that never changed but after some time she became a little selfish on how she handled the situation with Michael picking out a college. It was something that Ann didn’t realize until the issue was being investigated. After that, Ann re-evaluated why she adopted and helped Michael in the first place. In the end, Michael did end up going to the school that she wanted him to go to, but it was not because she persuaded him to but because he genuinely accepted all of them as his family and wanted to follow the advice of his family.
The third concept I will be discussing is relational maintenance. Michael is adopted and copes well with his new family. Ann’s husband Sean showed a little hesitation at first which I believe is purely natural because as a man of the house he has a responsibility on his shoulders to keep his house safe, and Michael was a total stranger. When Sean got to know Michael, he opened up and accepted him as part of the family and cared for him just like his other kids. Collins Tuohy refers him as his brother in disbelief of her friends. She also was reserved in how she felt about the situation until she had gotten to know Michael. The relationship between Sean Junior and Michael was that of brotherhood. Sean Junior was drawn to Michael from the very beginning, and they became to best of friends pretty quickly.
Michael became a valuable asset to the family much of which was unexpected of him. The family dynamic of the Tuohy’s was one of greatness. They all trusted and took care of each other. When Michael first came in the picture, Ann was not met with resistance for bringing and accepting a stranger in their home. She was met with reasonable concern at first to make sure she thought she was doing the right thing, but I believe that is normal and should not have been any different. Throughout the movie, I could see the love and concern in the hearts of both the Tuohy’s and Michael. It was like they needed each other. Michael required them to have a better chance at life, and Ann needed to be shown a bigger world.
When my girlfriend put that movie on the TV, I didn’t want to watch it. I thought it was a sad and drawn out movie that wouldn’t hold my attention. I am delighted that I chose to use this movie for my paper. This movie was full of different things to catch and keep viewer’s attention. The dynamics of interpersonal relationships in this movie were complex but were easily recognizable. It was surprising to me that Michael and other lead character didn’t use impression management at all, they were honest and pursued self-disclosure. The story of Michael Oher is one that inspires and shows that anything is possible as long as you have the right determination and support behind you and I believe every one student should watch this movie. Michael and Tuohy’s family are an inspiration for every human.
Of Interpersonal Communication About A Movie. (2022, Feb 02).
Retrieved September 26, 2022 , from
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