Watch The Strawberry Statement
- 1 hr 49 min
The Strawberry Statement is a 1970 movie directed by Stuart Hagmann based on a book of the same name by James Simon Kunen. The film revolves around Simon (Bruce Davison) who is a college student living in the United States during the period of political unrest in the late 1960s. As a political science major, Simon is interested in student activism and it is through his involvement with the student movement that he becomes swept up in the wave of protest. The film opens with a voiceover narration by Simon explaining his views on college, politics, and urban life. He argues that college is a place where students should learn to question the status quo and that politics has become too abstract and distant for the average American citizen. The movie then shifts to a shot of Simon sitting in his dorm room, surrounded by political posters, books, and flyers. It's here that he meets Linda (Kim Darby), a student activist who is passionate about political change. In an effort to be closer to the action, Simon moves out of his dorm and into the basement of the student center where Linda and her fellow activists have set up a makeshift headquarters. It is here that Simon is drawn into the revolutionary activities of the student body, including protests, sit-ins, and raids on campus buildings. Through his involvement, he begins to understand the meaning of the phrase "the personal is political" as he becomes increasingly committed to the cause of political change. As the movement gains momentum, the students become more radical and confrontational. Simon and Linda find themselves torn between their desire to effect change and their fear of the consequences of their actions. At the same time, Simon struggles to reconcile his personal relationships with his political ideals, especially when his friends begin to distance themselves from him. The film is notable for its depiction of the student movement of the late 1960s, a time of great upheaval and social change in America. The movie explores themes of political dissent, social justice, and the role of youth in shaping the future of the country. The film also examines the tensions that arise when idealism clashes with pragmatic concerns and the pressures of conformity. The Strawberry Statement boasts an outstanding cast, including Bruce Davison in the lead role of Simon, who delivers a nuanced and powerful performance. He captures the confusion and uncertainty of youth in a time of political upheaval, as well as the passion and idealism that drives the student movement. Kim Darby is equally impressive as Linda, bringing energy and authenticity to her portrayal of an activist who is fighting for the greater good. Bud Cort of Harold and Maude fame also stars in the film as Elliot, one of Simon's fellow activists. He adds a lighthearted touch to the movie with his quirky antics and dry wit. The supporting cast is equally strong, with standout performances from Murray MacLeod, Mark Wheeler, and Bob Balaban. The film's soundtrack is another highlight, featuring classic songs from the era, including "For What It's Worth" by Buffalo Springfield and "Somebody to Love" by Jefferson Airplane. The music adds an extra layer of emotion and meaning to the film, underscoring the themes of rebellion and resistance. In conclusion, The Strawberry Statement is a powerful and thought-provoking film that captures the spirit of the student movement of the late 1960s. With its strong performances, insightful writing, and amazing soundtrack, the movie is a testament to the power of youth voice and the importance of political activism. Despite being released over 50 years ago, the movie remains relevant today, serving as a timely reminder of the need for social change and the power of collective action.