Reflections on the Movie 'Pay It Forward'

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When someone does you a favor, what do you do? When you do a favor for someone, how do you feel? Well, Trevor McKinney will touch your heart and inspire you to pay it forward instead of giving back the favor.

Mimi Leder directed the drama film ‘Pay It Forward’ in 2000. It tells the story of Trevor McKinney, an 11-year-old who started the 'pay it forward' movement. Trevor is played by Haley Joel Osment, while Arlene McKinney, Trevor's alcoholic single mother, is played by Helen Hunt, and Eugene Simonet, Trevor's physically and emotionally damaged social studies instructor, is played by Kevin Spacey.

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“Think of an idea to change the world and put it into action”. I believe here is where the movie begins. At their first meeting, Mr. Simonet assigns his class an unusual assignment. Simonet wants his students to be aware of current events while also considering how they might make a difference in society. Trevor has a brilliant idea. He will perform an act of kindness for three people, and instead of receiving gratitude, each recipient will be asked to pay it forward to three other people. In the eyes of a child, all they want to do is be a kid and do nothing, but the reality is that they play an important role in our society and in the world. It was a good movie, but I didn’t like the ending. But what I liked about it was how the characters struggled with what they had. What I appreciated even more was how the characters began to move on, to make a small difference in their life, and to pay it forward with what they had.

If we define social responsibility, we can say that individuals and businesses have a responsibility to act in the best interests of their environment and society as a whole. And the movie ‘Pay It Forward’ is an excellent platform for demonstrating the concept of social responsibility. It represents the principle of reciprocity, in which one person gives another person things or labor without expecting anything in return. ‘Pay It Forward’ is a movie about helping others, and each character portrays their role in helping one another in the hopes of making a difference and creating a better society. ‘Pay it Forward’ is a theme that encourages people to give and love one another and respect and forgive. The movie follows two story lines at the same time: one follows the boy as he creates the Idea, while the other follows a reporter attempting to locate the Idea's creator. ‘Pay it Forward’ is a film about society and what each of us can do to make it a better place. Each character is a representation for a variety of life lessons.

I am confident that such a project will succeed in the actual world. ‘Pay it Forward’ is a chance for us to make our lives meaningful while also changing the world. What is the meaning of the world to us? What are our responsibilities? Unknowingly, we have done amazing things every day; they may be small and insignificant to us, but they are significant to others.

Paying it forward may make you more aware of unexpected acts of kindness from strangers, and you may find yourself becoming more grateful for everyday kindness and thoughtfulness from people you don't know. In fact, some group of people or several organizations allow people to anonymously pay it forward by donating money or conducting good activities without expecting to be recognized. The recipient of the money, gift, or good deed is just told to pay it forward. I believe that the key idea of the movie ‘Pay It Forward’ also occurs in our world, and that, especially in light of the pandemic, we must do good for our people, our community, and our global world. It will work in real life, because paying it forward does not have to include providing a large sum of money or expending a significant amount of effort. It could be as easy as holding the door for someone or assisting an elderly lady across the street, or assisting your parents at home with the house chores or help your siblings with their assignments. Paying it forward is actually quite easy; it encourages individuals to be good. Just like in any organizations, it needs its people to achieve success. Our world needs us or its people in order to sustain lives here on earth and we survive the difficulties in life such as the pandemic.

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Reflections on the Movie ‘Pay It Forward’. (2023, March 01). Edubirdie. Retrieved July 14, 2024, from
“Reflections on the Movie ‘Pay It Forward’.” Edubirdie, 01 Mar. 2023,
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Reflections on the Movie ‘Pay It Forward’ [Internet]. Edubirdie. 2023 Mar 01 [cited 2024 Jul 14]. Available from:

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