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Healing through Music

One of the most popular films from the 2016 Sundance Film Festival told a simple story. Set in 1980’s Ireland, the plot centers around a boy named Conor who comes from a broken home and is forced to changed schools.  In the healing process or the path to overcoming his challenges at home and school, Conor starts a band to impress a particular girl and gain the respect of his classmates. Although elements of the film are not entirely original, the myths and archetypes within the story provided the audience with a nostalgic experience.

Most of the hardships Conor faced throughout the movie are either a direct result of his troubled family or the strict rules at school. Because the relationship between siblings is permanent and school is obviously required these challenges were not easily escaped. However, the permanent archetype nature of these relationships supported Conor in his Hero’s journey and created a more entertaining story. For example, the relationship between Conor and his older brother Brendan provided a relationship for viewers to draw similarities into their own lives. Even though Conor’s older brother, Brendan, grilled him for the family’s financial problems and teased him about changing schools, it was the older brother who shared his passion for rock and roll. Brendan in fact dropped out school early to play the guitar but was never able to complete his personal dream. In Brendan’s own words, He tells Conor “You get to follow the path that I macheted… You just follow in my jet stream.”  These words disguised in the script tell us exactly how Brendan supported his younger.

The passion for Rock and Roll which Conor developed over the course of the story also allowed him to escape both the problems caused by his parents and openly rebel against the bullies he faced at school. Prior to changing schools Conor had never played an instrument but was quick to learn as he introduced himself as a singer to a girl he met after school. As he learned he became a self-declared futurist, evolving from the music he listened to with his older brother. As a result, not only did Conor change the culture of music but also his personal life. This was seen in the way Conor dressed stood up for himself at school eventually Conor had the matured enough to leave his home alongside his lover for the unknown opportunities of London. This is a pattern, also referred to as a healing myth and is similar to other popular indie movies like The Wilderpeople or Moonrise Kingdom which all involve the main characters physically leaving the homes as a means of escaping some kind of challenge.

The archetypes and healing myths tell the story of Sing Street in a for viewers to easily process the plot and draw conclusions. future Leaving the movie, it’s easy to feel happy for Conor and what he has accomplished. Even by his peers in the movie, Conor is considered a hero for becoming a new person and doing what no one else has been able to do before.

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