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Film Analysis

The Miracle Worker/ The Story of My

Helen Keller

Submitted by: John Albert R Amparo

I. Characters

Helen Keller: The blind and deaf daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Keller. She was
taught by her teacher Ms. Anne Sullivan to comprehend words through touch and sign
language. She was a wild and spoiled child who always gets what she wants until Ms.
Anne came and helped her become disciplined.

Mrs. Keller: She is the mother of Helen Keller who cares for her child though she
may be blind and deaf. She has hope that Helen will improve through Ms. Anne. But
later in the story her love and selfishness for her daughter may be a hindrance to
Helen’s education.

Mr. Keller: She is the father of the child who had no hope in Helen’s condition to
ever be improved until Mrs. Keller convinced him to ask for Ms. Anne’s help. He’s
showed little support for Helen’s education and believed her chances of communicating
is impossible. He is treated with great respect by each of the family members.

James Keller: The brother of Helen Keller who is greatly jealous of Helen
because of the attention she gets from her parents. He is afraid of his father and obeys
him without thought. He never stands up to him until Ms. Anne convinced him that his
father is still a man and that he has a right to stand up to himself.

Ms. Anne Mansfield Sullivan: She is the most determined character that I have
met in the film. She thoroughly believes that Helen will learn bit by bit. She faced
different kinds of challenges until she finally made Helen understand and made Helen to
see beyond her dark box.

II. Setting

The story took at a place called Ivy Green, the birth place of Helen. The
beginning part of the film where Ms. Anne tried to persuade Helen to learn was at her
home. When Ms. Anne realized that she couldn’t teach Helen in that sort of environment,
she asked her parents to allow her to move in a cottage in the field alone with Helen.
She was given a time limit of two weeks to teach Helen and after that they will come and
take her. The setting was quite good in harmony with the theme of the story because it
was full of symbolical meanings.

III. Theme

The story’s main theme is believing and education. The teacher believed that
Helen will succeed in comprehending and understanding her with sign language. She
made the family of Helen to believe that something impossible is possible if you believe.
She made them believe in Helen’s intelligence that was obstructed by her disabilities. It
showed the essence of education and how even a blind and deaf person can learn in the
hands of a good teacher.
IV. Plot

Ms and Mrs. Keller decided to ask someone to help Helen in her condition of
being both blind and deaf. Ms. Anne Sullivan took the job and went to their house to
teach Helen. James and Mr. Keller weren’t enthusiastic about this. Ms. Anne had trouble
in teaching Helen and was about to be kicked out when she asked to be moved in
cottage out in the field far from home to teach Helen there alone. Mrs. Keller convinced
Mr. Keller to accept this, he did but only under one condition that after two weeks they’ll
take Helen back. The teacher managed to make Helen behave and eat normally. They
arrived back at the house after two weeks Ms. Anne still asks for time to teach Helen but
they wouldn’t consent to this. Helen changed back to her old self after a few hours. The
teacher managed to convince everyone with the help from James, who finally stood up
to his father thanks to Anne, to allow her to have time with Helen alone. Upon filling the
pitcher of water Helen understood the meaning of what they have been doing, that all
things have a name. The plot was good and was really acted out well.

V. Point of View

The story was told through the determined eye of Miss Anne Sullivan, who
against all odds managed to teach Helen.

VI. Language / Style

The author of the anecdote was Helen Keller. It contained a style and language
of a blind and deaf person who felt gratitude to the person said to have taught her. She
uses a lot of symbolical meanings and wrote it from her point of view, though I doubt she
can see.

VII. Symbolism

The story and film used a lot of symbolical meanings to convey the message and
universal truth. The director used the teacher as a form of hope for Helen Keller. The
blindness and deafness of Helen symbolizes the obstacles and hindrances we face in
life and were overcame by Helen with the help of her guiding light, the teacher. The
cottage in the field symbolizes the growth of Helen and improvement through
independence from her parents and as the suitable environment for learning. The
breaking of the pitcher symbolizes the opening of Helens eyes and her new found
understanding on what the teacher was trying to say to her.

VIII. Personal Reflection

I have watched a lot of films each portraying a certain moral or lesson. In this film
I felt pity and unbelief for Helen. Why would God allow such a thing exist in this world?
Surely, I thought, a person like that can’t live. Her world must be black……empty…..and
silent. I was deeply affected on how hard that teacher tries to make Helen understand, to
make Helen know, to make Helen learn. That was of course not an easy task, and I
thought, it was utterly hopeless. Well, of course I felt angry at the people around Helen
for treating her like that. After the film I realized that those miracles do happen and that
is what our teachers are trying to do for us, to make us SEE.
IX. Suggestions/ Recommendations

I have nothing to recommend that will make the film better but I do have
suggestions that would help in making the film closer to the truth. Firstly Helen is
definitely not that wild brat who, in my opinion, looks like a crazy person on amok. With
some research I had known that Helen was actually capable of communicating with her
family through sixty different home signs. She was also very happy about Miss Anne
teaching her and even showed the words that she learned to her mother with pride.
That’s the only thing they need to realize, that Helen is no crazy monkey gone wild.

X. Rating of the Film

I’m rating it as G for general viewing of all ages. Aside from that I also will give it
a score of 8 over 10 due to its amazingly wonderful story and great education value. I
mean why can’t Filipinos make that kind of thing instead of dubbing it?


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