The Emperor's Club

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The Emperor’s Club is a film that addresses many moral and social aspects that are central to contemporary society’s moral controversy. Can morals be properly instilled in a young person outside of religion? Can our future decisions be predicted based on our current character? Can our current character even be changed or molded? Can morals be learned through studying the classics? The Emperors Club’s main characters are Mr. Hundert a teacher of classics at a prestigious preparatory school, and an unruly or misunderstood student, Sedgwick Bell. Their characters seem to perpetually butt heads, or at least be contrasting moral characters. How do I understand the ethical choices of the central characters? The main ethical dilemma in this film, I believe, is how Mr. Hundert decides to treat Sedgwick. Mr. Hundert associates himself with Sedgwick, after meeting Senator Bell; Hundert realizes that they both had very demanding and emotionally distant fathers. Mr. Hundert is driven to take this unruly student under his wing. Even though the senator is Sedgwick’s paternal father Mr. Hundert endeavors to become his spiritual father. The movie plot begins with Mr. Hundert in his classroom, leading his personal little army of students wearing togas. Sedgwick Bell enrolls and wastes no time in becoming a thorn in Hr. Hundert’s back. With the two of them battling it out for the respect and control of the classroom. Things coming to point when Sedgwick flips off Mr. Hundert and Hr. Hundert laying down a severe rebuke, saying “stupid is forever”. Mr. Hundert travels to meet with Senator Bell concerning the poor behavior of his son. Once seated comfortably, Senator Bell confronts Mr. Hundert about the “good” of what he was teaching his son Sedgwick. Mr. Hundert is obviously taken aback by this question. Evident by him replying, that the senator, of all people should understand the importance of what can be learned from the classics. He goes off and lists civic...
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