- What was your impression of the movie?
My impression is that Mr. Kowalski is a mourning man who puts up a harsh mask to cover up is sorrow and PTSD from the Korean war and for losing his wife. They presented Mr.Kowalski as a cold man who wants nothing to do with his new neighbors who are asian immigrants. After he catches one of the sons of the neighbors trying to steal is Ford Torino he really starts to hate them, but when the gang wants to revenge the son who got caught stealing Mr.Kowalski´s car, he stands up for him with a rifle and scare the gang away. After that he earns respect from the asian immigrant family and he starts helping their kids to get jobs. This plot was kind of easy to anticipate, but well appreciated.
2. Is this movie about multiculturalism – in your opinion? Why/why not?
Yes, in my opinion it is. They show quite clearly in the movie that Mr.Kowalski is from a quite white and religious family, while the immigrant neighbors are buddhist and asians. This shows that even though they live so close to each other they have different cultures, beliefs, norms, traditions and religions.
3. What negative sides of multiculturism are shown in the film?
Well, first of all you can clearly see that both sides make negative assumptions about eachother. Kowalski still can´t forget about the korean war and generalise them around that. The neigbors thinks Kowalski is a racist and wonder why he still lives in a coloured neighbourhood. You can also see that the different races living in that area don´t want anything to do with eachother. Black people keeps to themselves, hispanics keeps to themselves, asians keeps to themselves and the caucasians keeps to themselves. That shows that each «group» think their side or group is better than the other. Thoughts like that makes multicultural societies to seperate from eachother instead of unite and live in harmony.
4. How can a multicultural state face these challenges?
Education. Education is the biggest and the most efficient way of fixing these negatives. Giving each group an education about each other together will make them more united. Areas that are the most separated from each other should get more economical and educational support from the state. Poverty and desperation takes a huge part in the separation from each racial «group»
5. What positive sides of multiculturalism are shown in the film?
I have talked a lot about how different races tent to group up with each other in multicultural societies, but when they do actually gets at peace with each other and live in harmony it gets quite beautiful. People, for example Mr.Kowalski gets more open minded, accepting and gets a new perspective about life and love. People will be able to get new friends with a bigger varierity of religions, ethnicities, cultures, norms and traditions, and of course forming friendships and relationships with people they would never talk to if they where separated.
6. How can a multicultural state strengthen these benefits?
As said, trough education and economical support. The reasons is stated in the answer of nr.4