Violence in the Family - the Essence of Personal Identity Development – Movie Review Example

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The paper 'Violence in the Family - the Essence of Personal Identity Development ' is a worthy example of a movie review on social science. People are defined by the virtue of what they are when they began and what it may happen to them when they die. The virtue of being human is defined by personal identity. The personal identity develops to define people as lawyers, doctors, robbers, among others. The development of personal identity is influenced by various social factors such as culture, family, personal interests, friends, and surrounding environments.

The essence of personal identity development is evident in the following films: the History of Violence film, the Fighter Film, and Observe and Protect film. This paper focus on the main characters of these films develops their personal identities as films unfold from the beginning to the end. Their character traits vary from character to character in the three separate films. However, there are some similarities in personality traits. In ‘ The History of Violence, ' there is a moderate-mannered man who was fondly known as Tom Stall. Tom Stall became locally famous through his actions of violence in Millbrook town (Indiana).

He lived quietly and happily with his lawyer's wife and two children. One day, Tom viciously prevented attempted robbery in his diner. When Ton Stall sensed danger, he took the initiative to save his friends and customers in self-defense by killing two notorious and wanted criminals (Bart 16). In connection with the act of defense, Tom was praised as a hero. It was a surprise for Tom as he could not envisage himself as transformed in one night. To him, it was like a nightmare.

Tom’ s hero status attracted national media circus which astonishes brought him into the national spotlight. However, Tom is not comfortable with the new celebrity status. He struggles to transit to normalcy but to no avail. It is unbelievable for Tom and his family when a mysterious and intimidating man came to the town claiming that Tom had done something wrong with him. Therefore, Tom and his family fight back against the case of mysteriously mistaken identity. In the course of the process, their relationship with family is deeply confronted and a division was not inevitable (Bart 16). In the film ‘ Observe and Protect, ' we find the protagonist Ronnie who is brought up by his mother.

He faces great challenges because he lives together with his alcoholic mother even after securing a job. Ronnie is in charge of security guards at the Forest mall. While working as chief security at the Mall, he fell in love with a girl fondly known as Brandi. Brandi works as a sales clerk at one of the cosmetic shops near the Forest Ridge Mall.

She is fond of visiting Nell where she takes a free cup of coffee every day. Nell is also a clerk but from another business category. He works at a cheery food court (Michael 189). One day, misfortune fell upon the Forest Ridge Mall’ s parking area and something very terrible happened. It was one of the biggest thefts that have never been experienced at the Forest Ridge Mall’ s history. This theft occurred in the middle of the night. Ronnie has never experienced such a horrible haunt in his life and his work history.

Indeed, it was a great challenge as a chief security guard. He is determined to defend his position as he regarded himself as a failure, failed security officer indeed he was. Therefore, Ronnie is now extra vigilant in searching for criminals who stole from the Forest Ridge Mall. Unfortunately, Ronnie is not blessed with investigative skills as well as interrogative skills. Indeed, Ronnie has a false belief about what he can do, and end up making baseless and irrational accusations. Detective Harrison is a cop who is sent to do investigations.

Finally, Ronnie hopes to be an officer, with a chance to win Brandi, and eventually lost his self-control (Michael 211). In the Film ‘ The Fighter, ' Irish Mickey Ward was a junior welterweight boxing champion who severally tried riskier maneuvers and managed to pursued them ward off towards the end of the film. Narrating from the ward’ s point of view, the film showcases professional and personal violence. Thus, the film without boxing film can subsist, and these films are near-fascination for superstar Ward. Ward was so determined that he took daily training for about four years.

Fortunately, Wards had a close-knit family- his erratic brother who helped him train, his mother Alicia who brought him up, and Charlene, the attractive woman he has never met (Dole, and Leslie 30). Worth noting, Ward is introduced at the beginning of the film in intensive training for the forthcoming fight. However, his brother Dicky is supposed to be in charge of the fight preparation, but he ends up taking drugs. Ward’ s mother (mother and manager) is not even interested in his art.

She has lacquered fair-haired hair and is viewed as self-absorbed and easily manipulated as depicted to her chain-smoking lord who hovers as vultures do over Ward’ s career as a boxer (Dole, and Leslie 30). Additionally, Ward’ s faces a series of challenges more so when a golden rule is adopted by Alice and Dicky that if he fails to fight – no payment. So it is horrifying that this led to mismatch and ward is battered almost to death. Thereafter, Ward met party girl, Charlene, who helped him break loose from family grips.

On another hand, in The Fighter, the clan is depicted as if based on reality. As if it does not hold the guarantee for people who are eager to spend their time, watching the cinematic unfolding, and are willing to yield freely into the idiosyncrasy (Michael 189). Ward is incomparable to his brother as he is an icon of stability, but his opponent attempts to destabilize as he is aware of the ward’ s socioeconomic origin, but he is such as a loser as people recognize him as a person wallowing in-universe of losers, addicts, and social misfits.

Consequently, the film is at the climax when an award is in the ring where he is on a grand finale after a long and bruising history of a quagmire (series of defeats), and fight to what he finally becomes (Dole, and Leslie 30). There are several similarities that can be made from the three films in relation to the development of the personal identity of the selected characters. The three character’ s personal identity development is influenced by social factors such as families and friends.

In ‘ The Fighter, ’ Mickey ward is most of his life is affected by family members such as his mother, Alicia, and his brother, Dickey who abandoned him were it not for the help of the party girl. The same case is evident in other films where the protagonists are involved in love in the course of developing personal identity. However, there are various contrasting issues of the three characters in the three films. In ‘ the history of violence, ’ Tom’ s personal identity development is incidental. Tom, in the course of killing his two gang members, incidentally became a hero overnight as a result of eliminating the most wanted and dangerous thugs.

Incidental development is not witnessed in other characters. Additionally, Tom suffers from family division in the case of mistaken identity. This case of mistaken personal identity is not seen in other characters. Additionally, in the ‘ observe and protect’ film, Ronnie the security officer, after the Mall robbery, he lost his personal identity (self-control) towards the end of the film. The loss of personal identity is not experienced by other characters.

Lastly, in ‘ the fighter’ the Ward develops his personal identity (boxer) through perseverance and endurance after failing constantly in boxing. However, through determination, he developed what he wanted to become a boxer. This virtue is not found in other characters, in the other two films. Conclusion Conclusively, personal identity differs from person to person and so is its development. One of the most conceived personal identities is mistaken identity. The development of personal identity is a process. It is greatly affected by social factors such as families, friends, perception, and surroundings. These factors’ can be used to explains the difference in personal identity development.


Beaty, Bart. David Cronenberg's History of Violence. Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 2008. Print, pp15-30.

Dole, Ivan G, and Leslie Taggart. Engage College Reading. , 2013. Print, pp 30 – 60.

Oden, Michael. Observe and Protect. 2007, pp 189-220

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