Movie Review : Won’t Back Down


The other night, I was lucky enough to be invited by Circle of Moms to a screening of the new movie Won’t Back Down. I decided to turn it into a girls movie night, and took one of my dearest friends along. We found ourselves laughing, crying, smiling, and biting our nails. It had all the makings of a great movie!

The film is a drama about two mother’s, played by Maggie Gyllenhaal and Viola Davis, who set out to takeover and reform an inner city school system. These two mom’s risk everything in order to pave the way for a better education for their children. I think it’s a compelling story about complications all parents face. You can watch the trailer here.

There has already been some negative buzz about the film, and how it’s thought to attack the teacher unions and the public school system. I can see why there would be concern since the film leaves out important realities and complexities regarding school reform. However, I don’t think the intention was to bash unions, but rather to inspire parents.

Since my daughter is three, and is about to start preschool, my takeaway from this movie may be different from that of other parents. I am still learning how school systems work, and although I have always known how valuable a good education is, I am now realizing how incredibly important it is to be involved and hands on when it’s time for your kids to start school. As parents we need to be a vocal part of the school system—because we CAN help shape the future and direction in which our public schools head—and fight for our kids to get the best education possible. That is the reality and lesson that I took away from the film.

In a recent interview for the Washington Post, Randi Weingarten said “Parent engagement is essential to ensuring children thrive in the classroom. The power of partnerships between parents, teachers and the community is at the heart of school change.” Well said. Sure the movie may have been extreme, but I think it needed to be. I know I left inspired, and I will always be involved in my children’s education.

At the end of the day, it was a great movie and I enjoyed my night out!


My reviews are completely honest and my own personal opinion. Please note that with this review I am not showing any support for or against Fox, Walden Media, or any other organizations or companies involved in the film.
The Gold Jellybean aims to provide unbiased editorials. However, I wish to disclose that from time to time I may receive free products or other compensation from companies for blogger reviews.

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