Written and directed by Mike Pavone, with a fine, understated, atypical performance by Ed Harris, it may be a feel-good family picture centered on kids, but it offers talismans to live by for people of all ages. Simon wears owlish spectacles and wimpy bow ties, reads fervently from literary classics and acts as a booster for the student talent show, encouraging otherwise timid youngsters to sing, dance and play drum solos. Simon also drives a flashy convertible he won in a newspaper contest asking participants to offer a solution to world peace in 25 words or less his prize-winning entry:
As the project goes on, Andy and Stanley form a close bond. While the project is going, a rumor starts spreading around the school that Mr. Simon is a homosexual.
One of the school's bullies, Jason Fleer tells his father, who goes to the school principal to ask if the rumor is true.
The principal does not know, so she confronts Mr. Simon, who says that being a homosexual should not change his job. Simon does not confirm nor deny that he is a homosexual. Jason Fleer's father threatens to tell the whole community about the rumor, which he takes as a fact.
While that is happening, Andy's crush, Mary Clear, falls in love with him. Ricky Brown, the school's bully who is Mary's ex-boyfriend threatened Andy that if he goes near Mary, he'll kill him because he still likes Mary.
Ignoring this fact, Andy asks Mary if she wants to go steady, and she says yes. While trying to ask Mary, Ricky shows up to the scene and tries to beat Andy up, but before he gets to it Mary steps in and tells Ricky to leave Andy alone.
Stanley is also revealed to have wanted to perform in the school talent show, and even though Stanley's best friend Norman Gunmeyer does not condone it, Stanley participates anyway. At the show, Andy realizes that Norman isn't there, and bikes over to his house to ask him to go.
Norman puts up a fight but then decides to go.
When Stanley starts to perform, Ricky has a tomato in his hand and is planning on throwing the tomato at Stanley. Andy walks up to him, tells him not to throw the tomato. Andy then kicks him in the groin, and Ricky screams in anguish, but Mr.
Simon does not punish Andy but rather congratulates him.
Andy also finds out that Mr. Simon is moving to Florida, and even though Andy tries to stop him, Mr. Simon's mind is set.Basically, WWE Studios wants you to know they have a heart– and so we get That’s What I Am, television writer/director Michael Pavone’s big screen feature debut.
A coming-of-age story that follows year-old Andy Nichol, a bright student who, like most kids his age, will do anything to avoid conflict for fear of suffering overwhelming ridicule and punishment from his junior high school peers. The film was produced by WWE Studios, which explains the casting of third-generation wrestling personality Orton in a decent acting debut as Carl’s manipulative dad.
EN3 (Stu), Michael Goerz Film Analysis: Summary of Concepts and Terms I General Information, Background - Cast (Actors, Director, Storywriter, Editor.
Apr 15, · This is my favorite scene from this great movie. “That’s What I Am” means to be an earnest, uplifting family film, which is all well and good, but the movie evinces a fitful attention span, and Pavone never comes up with a way to.