Catch me if you can - film essay

Could I plz get some feedback on this film essay

Q3 - Describe an important idea in the text.
Explain whether or not you think this idea is relevant to teenagers today.

In ‘Catch me if you can by Steven Speilberg, one of the most important ideas is that money can’t buy happiness, knowing that you are loved can. The saying ‘money can’t buy you happiness is a misconception because it can’t, it may give you wealth and fame and make you slightly happier but it will never fulfill you. When watching ‘Catch me if you can’ Frank, the main character tries to buy his happiness with money, but he is still missing something and that is the feeling of being loved.

Frank had a great life up until his parents’ messy divorce where Frank had to decide which parent he wanted to live with, Frank couldn’t and wouldn’t choose so instead he ran away and became a con artist. As Frank ran away you could see the fear on his face. In today’s society divorce is something many teenagers go through at a young age, and it can potentially affect them for the rest of their lives. Most teenagers can relate to Frank as they have been through what Frank has been through. Frank idolized his father and got the idea of being a con artist from him. Frank believes being a con artist will bring him happiness as he will get money and he thinks this is how you get joy in life, but what he is searching for is the perfect family he never had.

One morning, Frank Abagnale Sr (Frank’s father) got Frank Abagnale Jr out of bed and took him to a store where Frank Jr watches his father con a woman into lending them a black suit for Frank Jr. Frank wanted to be just like his father as he wanted his father to notice him. When Frank decides to run away and start conning people it was all because of his father, he wanted his father to notice him and Frank thinks this is the only way. Teenagers in today’s society want people to notice them so they can go too far extents. Frank is shown throughout the movie as many different people. Frank cons many people, even the FBI, into believing he is an assistant state attorney general in the U.S. state of Louisiana, a hospital physician in Georgia, and a Pan American World Airways pilot where he logged over two million air miles by deadheading. Frank thinks that if he does something his father does he will be noticed by him, but conning isn’t something you can get away with, so he was always going to be caught.

Frank thinks that if he gets lots of money, and buys things for his parents maybe they will get back together. But he finds out from his father that his mother has moved on with the guy she was having an affair with while still married to Frank’s father. Frank is shown devastated. He goes on the run again, asking his father to tell him to stop but his father doesn’t. Frank starts to do even bigger cons and becomes more noticed by the FBI until he finally gets caught. He wants to ring his father and talk to him but the FBI agent who caught him tells him that his dad suddenly died on a commute to New York City. Frank then regrets running away and wishes that he had stayed and spent more time with his father. Teenagers in today’s society regret many things and wish they had spent time with loved ones instead of focusing on other things that in the long run are less important.

The most important idea to remember is that money can’t buy you happiness, knowing that you are loved can, and many people forget this. When watching ‘Catch me if you can by Steven Speilberg, shows how badly Frank wants happiness, but he can’t find it with money. Frank tries to buy his happiness with money, but he is always still missing something and that is the feeling of being loved. Teenagers in today’s society want happiness and think they can buy it just like Frank but everyone soon realizes that you can’t buy it by then it is too late and they have done something that they will seriously regret.

Kia ora Tabitha7,

Thanks for sharing your essay with us. I think you’ve made a great question choice. What I would like to see in your introduction is specific mention of the ideas being relevant specifically to teenagers today. Make sure you use the key words from the question.

You’ve clearly got a great understanding of the text but there’s one big thing missing from your essay which will prevent you from achieving. That is using film techniques. In a visual text essay, you have to discuss how the director used film techniques to convey things.

An example of how you could use some film techniques is in your sentence, “As Frank ran away, you could see the fear on his face.” Did the director use a close up shot to capture the fear in his eyes? Was there a long shot of him running? Was there any dialogue that he says which describes how he was feeling?

Kia pai tō mahi :slight_smile: