‘The words get really hard; it’s really the luck of the draw.’ – Contestant April.
We don’t even use these words or have never heard of these words before. But somehow these early teens’ spells words like imperturbable. It’s a struggle for adults, how much more would it be for teens’? No one spells now thanks to spell check but words like oscilloscope are the standard words in the Spelling Bee of the UK, which kids between the ages of 11 to 13 spell.
Spellbound is a 2002 documentary that was directed by Jeffrey Blitz. The film follows eight competitors in the 1999 Scripps national Spelling Bee. The spelling bee has been the longest tradition in America. ‘If I win the spelling bee, I will be ecstatic.’ – Contestant Angela. This documentary shows the intensity of the spelling bee in the America. The annual Scripps national Spelling Bee has been aired since 1994 and attracts many people every year. This documentary shows all teenagers working hard and practising daily, first having to the regional spelling bee before they can move on. Interviews include the parents and helpers who are working with them. The competitors not only work hard to get to the finals but face tremendous pressure as the original group of over 250 competitors is whittled down and the words they spell get ever more difficult. Spellbound is an ‘edge-of-the-seat’ documentary film.
One critic also describes as, ‘Entertaining and thrilling as any Hollywood blockbuster.’
But watching this documentary myself I did not find it thrilling as it was very predictable and it didn’t cause high exhilaration or surprise. It is entertaining as it is humorous and amusing to watch and keeps us appealed throughout the whole documentary as the end is the ‘real’ end of the real spelling bee at the time.
Some of the themes shown in this documentary film cultural division, family pressure and aspirations. All which had shown intertwined with each other.
Cultural division is shown through the different...