Please give me feed back on my essay! - Catch Me If You Can

Please anyone help. I am really struggling at English Level 1.

Describe a conflict in the text. Explain how this conflict helped you understand human nature.

In the film Catch Me If You Can directed by Stephen Spielberg, a crucial conflict is Frank’s internal conflict of dealing with a broken home. This enabled me to understand that broken homes lead to an unstable life for children, the importance of human connection, and the connections we have with others is what makes us whole. Stephen Spielberg’s purpose is to show us the impacts a broken home can have on a child.

This conflict all started when Frank Abegnale Jnr’s parents had a divorce. It was sudden and surprising not only for Frank but also the audience, because there had been little to no indication that his parent’s relationship was worsening. Through the use of chiaroscuro lighting, it helped to depict how Frank is emotional, confused, and divided as he makes a decision as to which custody he will be in. He doesn’t know which answer is correct to make and is scared of making the wrong decision because he doesn’t want his family to be torn apart. As we see a jump-cut of Frank running away, Frank is, in a way, shoulders the responsibility of keeping his family together- a responsibility no child should ever have to bear. Through this, it shows me that those caught in the middle- the children- are affected the most. This leaves the children in a state of guilt and instability, as they are left to pick up the pieces their parents left. Also, without their parents, they have no one to teach them what is right and wrong, to guide, and to help them carve their own paths.

We see this conflict in Frank when he calls Carl on Christmas Eve after running away. In this scene, we see dark lighting, which suggests that Frank is literally and figuratively in a dark place. He feels empty inside because he has “no one else to call”. He is frustrated with being alone and desperate to the point that he tells Carl the exact place he is staying at -“Room 3113.” In a way, that call to Carl is Frank’s way of calling for help. Through this scene, it showed me how human connection is something we cannot live without, and that the longer we live without it, we end up feeling helpless and lonely. It also shows me how much we would do anything to seek for human connection even if it meant compromising ourselves, such as Frank telling Carl his location.

Frank finally resolves this conflict by finding a place to call home with the help of Carl Hanratty. When Frank Abegnale Jnr tries to leave again and go back to a life of crime, we see bright lighting employed by Stephen Spielberg, as Carl tries to stop him, telling him that “no one is chasing you.” This bright light signifies that he has finally found someone who could give him everything he ever wanted: to feel loved and valued. This is something which he previously lacked, as he was in a dark place literally and figuratively when he was talking to Carl Hanratty during Christmas eve. The words “no is chasing you” helped Frank realise that the life of crime is something which he no longer wanted. The only reason he led the life of crime and fraud of being a pilot is because it gave him admiration and attention, which momentary filled the void in his life. This feeling of belonging is reinforced in the ending scene, where we see a wide-shot of Frank in the office. In this shot, he is lost and hard to find, which tells the audience that he has finally found a place to belong and call home. This showed me that home/family doesn’t have to be biological. It is the connections we form with others and the sense of comfort and belonging we feel when we are with them. It may take a long time to find them, but once you do, it is what makes you whole.

In conclusion, the main conflict in Catch Me If You Can is Frank trying to deal with a broken home. It showed me that in a divorce, the children are more affected than any other parties, and it also showed me that human connections is something we cannot live without and we will do anything to get it. Furthermore, family does not have to include parents and children, it can be the strong connections we form with others.

Kia ora Ernest123!

This essay demonstrates that you have a good understanding of the events and techniques used in the film. You have also started to develop your points clearly in this essay.

To build on this, there are a few things that would hugely improve your essay. The first one would be to ensure that you directly answer both parts of the question. In this essay, you have answered the first part really clearly. The second part asks you to look at how the conflict helped you understand human nature. The aspects you look at do hint that they are part of human nature but you don’t explicitly state this. If you consider it to be in human nature to want to belong and feel accepted then stating that directly, using key words from the question, would have been hugely helpful.

Ensure that you are very clear about the different literary aspects of a text. Conflict is a vital one. You talk about internal conflict. You don’t actually say what he is conflicted about. Conflict suggests there are (at least) two things working in opposition; even with internal conflict, which denotes a choice. Moreover, conflict brings about a change so make sure that you are clear about what this change is. It would have been really interesting to link this to human nature as well.

Additionally, you touch on the director’s purpose and now need to look at how you can explore this further. Think about how you could discuss what the director wants us to think about the messages they are trying to get the audience to think about and the techniques used to do this. From my perspective, you’ve definitely started this. Give a few more details about what the audience sees or hears in relation to the techniques you talk about. Being more direct would also be really beneficial.