Codebreakers Movie Analysis
Define the following words: friendship, trust, loyalty, and honor. - What do each of these words mean to you? - Where do we see examples of these characteristics today? - Out of the four words listed, which do you believe is the most important and why? - What are some situations that might test or challenge these characteristics?
Friendship is the bond of between two people when there are common hobbies, interests, or activities they both choose to participate. To me, friendship matters a lot. Yes, I have a family and a sibling but I connect with my friends in ways I can't with someone like my brother or my mom. Trust can be harder to describe because it isn't something you can see or hear. Trust is the feeling that you know you can count on someone for some kind of cause. I trust the people in my life very much and life would be a lot harder if I didn't have the trust of my friends and family. Loyalty falls in with trust because its also a feeling. It is hard to explain loyalty different than trust because they are almost the exact same thing. Trust being something that has people stick up for and loyalty is someone sharing and agreeing with what opinions and actions you do or have. Trust and loyalty stick side by side; almost as one. Honor is something you want within a friend, alike trust and loyalty. Its a trait that people will respect what others say or do. It is also a trait a cheater can never have. Its following the rules and respecting others opinions. All of these things mean something to me, but in very different ways. I couldn't choose which is most important because all of these go together more as one, not as four different words.
What are your thoughts regarding “rules.” - Why are there rules? - Are there times when rules are necessary? - Should every rule be followed every time? If not, when and why? - How should rules be made and who should make the rules? - Should rules be changed? If so, when and why? - What are some rules that should remain? What are some rules that could be repealed?
Rules are not fun and sometimes difficult but they are the only things that keep society in order. They tell us what to do and (much more often) they tell us what NOT to do. Personally, rules are almost always necessary. If there were no rules, there would be no right or wrong. That would cause total chaos. Although rules are very important to keep people in line, you shouldn't blindly follow what people say are rules. When rules turn wrong, the strict people that follow rules will do anything if one goes against them. Sometimes rules can be wrong and the people who believe against them should speak out for what they believe. Most rules are made to conform with society and make a place where everyone agrees on the majority of things. However, rules can't always stay the same. Society will change with new inventions and cause new rules that need to be created or old rules that will need to change to keep up with society. Rules hold us together but sometimes, they can push the world apart.
Coach Blake says, when talking with the reporters, that if any of his players are guilty of cheating that they should be removed from the football team and WestPoint Academy. - What are your thoughts on cheating? - What situations cause people to consider cheating? - Is cheating ever justified? - If people are caught cheating, what should happen? o Should they receive a warning? o Should they receive no credit? o Should they be removed from the program?
Cheating should never be tolerated, no matter what the situation is. To me, people who cheat only cheat because they want to win so badly but they really aren't good enough to do so. To others, people cheat only because they want to win, somehow get some sort of "revenge" on another person, or even because they know they can get away with it. Cheating can't really be justified because if something is not to be done, it probably shouldn't be done. The extreme of the consequence that should happen to cheaters depends on what the cheater did. Say in basketball a player took one too many steps with the ball, they should either get away with it without the refs noticing, or get a small foul. If someone say used notes on a test they weren't allowed to use notes on, their test score should be considered a zero percent because they weren't putting any effort or knowledge for the test. In Codebreaker, any soldier should be expelled from the game because they are representing America by playing football.
In their dorm room, George Hollbrook and Brian Nolan discuss their personal backgrounds. Summarize their discussion. - What kind of family and home life does each boy come from? - What are the reasons for each boy to be at WestPoint? - What are some of the family traditions for each boy? - What sport does each boy participate in?
George came from Nebraska were he lived with his grandma. They were very poor and he was sent to the academy to get him a better life. On the other hand, Brain came from a very rich family. The reason he was at the army school was four of his siblings graduated from that school and he was expected to do the same. Brain claims that his family would shoot him if he returned without graduating. Both of them play football and don't do very well grade wise.
The senior cadets stop and interrogate a new recruit in the courtyard. They make him recite the Honor Code. The word “Honor” is carved above all the other words on the entrance. - Why do you believe the word “Honor” is carved above all the other words? - What are your thoughts about how and where they question the new recruit? - What are the benefits and drawbacks of having an Honor Code? - Do you believe our school should have an Honor Code
The word "Honor" is most likely carved higher than the other words because the people there probably value honor above anything else. The place they question the new recruit is most likely so that others can see and hear him. That would put him under stress and force him to try harder. Some benefits of the honor code would help cadets learn and practice honor more often. To the students point of view, it seems like something they have to get tested on and maybe also something the instructors would have so they can pick on certain people to make them embarrassed. If our school were to have an honor code, it would probably mean absolutely nothing to most kids. I don't think it would improve anything, just make some kids want to not be honorable more. Those who will behave with honor will do so whether it is a code or not.
Desantis and Hollbrook have a conversation about cheating in order to pass the tests. - How does this conversation challenge Hollbrook’s beliefs? - How is the Honor Code relevant in their discussion? - What do you believe that Hollbrook should do? - What would be the benefits and drawbacks if Hollbrook decides to cheat?
Hollbrook very much believes in the honor code and does not try to break it. The honor code is most likely the only reason Hollbrook denied Desantis's offer to get him all the right answers for the test. I agree that Hollbrook should not abandon the honor code and do what he thinks is right (not to cheat on tests) instead of doing what would be easier. In the long run, it would help him, especially if they get caught. That way he won't get punished for cheating and have to face the consequences the other cheaters may have to face.
Hollbrook meets with Desantis in order to participate in the cheating ring. - What is your reaction to Hollbrook’s decision to pass and accept test questions? - Do you believe his situation required him to cheat? Did he have any other options? - How would you have reacted if you were in his situation faced with the pressure of being kicked off the team if you did not pass your exams?
Hollbrook's decision on cheated to pass a test is not one I think he should have done. It is surprising that he did accept the offer to cheat when obviously he did not want to but thought he had to. He didn't need to cheat he just had to study more and harder. He needed to spend more time studying during lunch and for long periods of time after practice. If I was in his situation, I would not cheat. If I cheated, I would know that the only reason my grade was good was because I wasn't honorable. At all. I would go through my days with guilt filling my mind and be completely distracted. I would never want to be in that kind of situation.
At the end of the Army/Navy game, there is a timeout. Bob, the quarterback, asks the assistant coach, “Does it really matter?” His father, the head coach, replies, “Always – until the end.” - Do you believe in that this game, they should have played hard to the end. - What are your thoughts about the head coach’s response to his son? - What are some examples of times when something seems hopeless, but people should still remain strong?
No matter what, the Army should have kept going until they could go no more. If they kept fighting, they may have had a better chance but since they stopped trying, they stopped gaining back on the Navy. If they team looked at it like a war, they would go on and on even if everything seemed lost. But the Army gave up, unlike what they would really do in a different situation.
After the loss to Navy, Hollbrook discovers that he can pass his classes without cheating. However, Desantis pressures Hollbrook to continue passing answers for the other players. - Should Hollbrook continue to pass answers so that his teammates can pass their classes and remain on the team? - What would you do in this situation – how would you respond to Desantis?
Hollbrook should NOT pass answers. First off, he gains nothing from it but has to work harder for nothing. If the other guys on Hollbrook's football team wanted to stay on the team, those guys need to try harder and start studying. If I was in that same situation, I believe I would have denied Desantis's request and just walked away and ignored him and the other cheaters.
When Nolan consults his father about whether or not to come forward about the cheating ring he has discovered, his father responds by saying, “So you’re faced with adversity and what do you do, run?” - What is your reaction or thoughts about the father’s response? - How do you believe that Nolan should proceed?
I think Nolan's father is testing Nolan's faith to the honor code but not in a way that would just tell Nolan what the consequences are. This way, Nolan still has to make his own decision and will have to face the consequences for either choice. When it comes to what Nolan should do, I would be stumped. If he reports it, everyone will dislike him. But if he doesn't report it, then he will feel the guilt and continue to struggle in school. After much thought I would follow the Honor Code and report it but it would be very hard, no matter what choice
Bob Blake, tells his father, the coach, that he passed test questions and violated the Honor Code? - What is your reaction to Bob’s choice to tell his father the truth? - Do you feel that the coach legitimately was unknowing of the cheating ring?
When Bob admitted to his father about the cheating ring, I was surprised. It was the right thing to do, even though it was difficult for Bob. Based off of the coach's reaction, I would assume he knew there was some cheating but not his own son.
Discuss your thoughts about the threats and attacks against Nolan by his fellow cadets. Also, provide your thoughts about how his mother and father react when they visit Nolan in his dorm room.
When Nolan confessed that there were cheaters, I knew people would threaten him and try to harm him. The only reason they have attacked him is that they know they can't pass without cheating. But, when Nolan ruined that, they may not past. Then, when his parents started yelling at him about what he did was not the right thing was also really surprising. I thought that his parents would be more supportive of Nolan's decision.
“A man who admits he is wrong is not fit to command.” - What is your opinion on this quote? - Does your opinion change when only applying it to the military? - Are there any circumstances where this quote would be true?
I disagree with the quote because if a someone always thinks they are correct, they will never seek out assistance or accept other ideas. Even when only applied in military means, I still disagree with it because if that commander is wrong and thinks the bad choice is the right one many people could die. I can't right off the bat think off a situation that this quote would be true.
Bob Blake, the quarterback, goes before the committee and admits that he passed test questions thereby violating the Honor Code. However, he will not name the people he gave those test questions to – he admits his own guilt, but will not turn in his friends. - Should Blake have provided the names of his teammates to the committee? - Do you feel that Blake’s actions were honorable? - Is it fair that those not named will be able to graduate and Blake will not graduate?
I understand why Blake would not turn his friends in because if he did he would face the threats as Nolan is. In some ways, Blake's actions can be considered honorable but to the committee, they were the wrong decisions. Though, if those who are not named graduate but Blake doesn't seems very wrong because although Blake didn't give names, he still admitted to doing a wrong thing, which should at least allow him to graduate. On the other hand, not saying the names also allows the other cheaters to graduate and become commanding officers.
The guard outside Nolan’s dorm room explains to Nolan that he has probably saved the Honor Code by his actions. What are your thoughts about their conversation? - Do you think that Nolan was right in revealing the cheating ring? - Did he save the Honor Code? - How do you think that the guard’s words impacted Nolan?
The conversation they had was very short but it was a meaningful one. I think the guard's words helped Nolan see what he did from a better point of view and possibly showing him that he made the right decision. I disagree with the guard in the fact that Nolan saved the Honor Code. The men who were cheating are still cheating and will soon be graduating. though i do think Nolan made the right choice in revealing the cheating ring but the committee didn't act fast enough to truly save the Honor Code.
Coach Blake goes to see the General. The General tells Blake “not to leave under fire.” What are your thoughts regarding their conversation? - Should Coach Blake quit and retire? - Should the coach stay? - Do you believe that it is important to stick with something when times are difficult? - Are there any circumstances when it is better to give up and quit?
In this situation, Coach Blake should not retire because the football team needs him to lead them and because anyone in the public will think he is giving up on the team, only bringing his reputation farther down. I do think it is important for anybody to face a difficult time, even Blake should stay and face it. In most situations, everyone should stick with something as long as they are willing to put all of their heart and mind to it.
Do you believe that the cadets were justified in cheating?
I believe that the cadets were not justified for their actions. They knew cheating was wrong but continued to do so. They broke they Honor Code by cheating and if they weren't expelled they would lead men into a war. Those cadets represent America and by cheating they also showed other to be cadets what will happen if they participate in any kind of cheating ring. What the cadets did was wrong. and they got the right punishment.
Should the cadets who cheated be given a second chance? - Are there times in our society today where people should be given a second chance? - Are there instances today where people should not be given a second chance? - Who should determine if people receive a second chance?
I have said many times before that the cadets cheating was wrong. and for this question I will say it again. The cadets cheated even when everything they had been told while at West Point and while they grew up was to not cheat. Giving them a second chance would most likely result in the same thing with maybe a few less people participating. In our society, there are times when you should be given second chances. You could get to try again on a test you failed or maybe you didn't do something and instead of losing something that first time you would be able to try again. But when it comes to something that has to do with war, no second chances should ever be given.
Discuss your thoughts about George Hollbrook not being allowed to remain at the academy after Nolan was promised that Hollbrook would be allowed to stay?
When Hollbrook had to resign, I was surprised. I would think the ones who admitted it would be allowed to stay even though they weren't honorable to start with but they did come to be a little more honorable when they admitted. Also, I was confused because they said the ones who didn't admit would still graduate. But, at the end DeSantis resigned and I thought he never admitted.
Do you believe that rules/Honor Code are more important than friends?
If the rules risk the lives of others or your friend, rules are much more important. The answer really depends on your point of view. Some people may value friends or a team more, like DeSantis. Or some people may think rules/Honor Codes are more important. And some could be like Bob Blake; a happy medium who respects his friends but will turn himself in without turning in others.