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Crash Redemption

“No matter how far wrong you’ve gone, you can always turn around. ” The world renowned 2005 film, Crash, directed by Paul Haggis, sends the positive message of hope and potential for redemption in the world. Many of the characters make the wrong decisions and receive grace from the universe, which shows the audience that they should always be hopeful and understand that redemption is possible. Although the characters’ motives may not be justified, an unearthly force gives them the opportunity to redeem themselves and become better people.

The characters of Jean Cabot, Farhad, and John Ryan are given the chance to accept the redemption they have been given or continue their terrible decision making. Jean Cabot plays the role of the prejudice politician’s house wife that takes out her inner hatred of her own life on other people. Without hesitation, Jean projects her preconceived notions of people. After her car was stolen, Jean wanted to get the locks on her house replaced. When a latino man shows up to do the job, She demands for them to be replaced again.

While the locksmith, Daniel Ruiz, is in hearing range, Jean lets her husband know, “[I’d] appreciate it if they didn’t send a gang member” (Haggis). She has no problem stereotyping others right in front of them. Right before she receives her moment of grace she has a realization. After the incident, She talks to one of her “friends” about her life and realizes that, “[She] [is] angry all the time… and [she] [doesn’t] know why”(Haggis). This made her realize that she is utterly alone. She is alone in her marriage and her friendships all because of her harsh attitude towards everything and her overall intolerance.

After this epiphany, Jean receives a wake up call when she fell down the stairs and had no one to help her except for her houskeeper. Her housekeeper takes her to the hospital when no one else would, her husband included, and Jean tells her, “[She’s] the best friend I’ve got” (Haggis). She finally understands that she has to change her ways and the audience gets a sense that she plans on changing her ways. Farhad, however, experiences a more dire, extreme situation as a moment of grace. Farhad was a store owner that relied on the store financially.

The store he ran was all he had besides his wife and daughter. He decides to buy a gun at the beginning of the film to protect the store after it had been broken into. His daughter protests, begging him not to buy the gun but he explains, “That man would have killed your mother. You think I should let crazy people do what they want to us” (Haggis)? His wife was present at the time of the robbery and he felt he needed to protect his family as well as the store. After the break in, Farhad got Daniel Ruiz, the locksmith, to replace the lock on the already broken door.

Ruiz did his job and left the store after arguing with farhad about the lock that he fixed. Farhad accuses Ruiz of trying to scam him and says, “he cheat me; you try to cheat me right” (Haggis)? Soon after, the store is completely destroyed and vandalized. The insurance company does not cover any of the damages due to the fact that Ruiz already fixed the lock. It was not the lock that granted access for the burglary, it was the broken door. Since Ruiz already tried to explain this to Farhad prior to the breakin, the insurance company owes him nothing.

Farhad is enraged and tracks down Ruiz and gets his information. He goes to Ruiz’s house, armed with the gun, with the intent of killing him. He arrives at Ruiz’s house and pulls a gun n him and demands the money he owes for the damages in the store. Ruiz denies his involvement. His sweet, innocent, and young daughter runs out of the house and jumps in front of the bullet. After a few seconds of pure shock, Farhad, Daniel Ruiz, and his wife realize that the little girl is untouched. The audience does not find out until later that the bullets were just blanks the whole time.

Not knowing about the blanks, Farhad tells his daughter, “I shot a little girl,” He goes on to tell her that the little girl was his guardian angel (Haggis). After he says this, the audience becomes aware of the fact that his daughter purchased the blanks at the start of the film. He is granted perhaps the biggest moment of grace there is. He had intentions of taking someone’s life and is shown that he can turn things around after he realized that the girl is unscathed by the bullet.

This was a crucial realization for Farhad and definitely altered his life and outlook on life for the better. Just as Farhad receives an obvious moment of grace, so does the character of John Ryan. John is a corrupted policeman that sexually assaults women and takes advantage of his position. He has his own private problems such as the health of his father who is suffering from several ailments. The women he assaults is permanently scarred from the ordeal.

She screams out, “And you, keep your filthy fuckin’ hands off me! Ow! You fucking pig” (Haggis)! He changed her when he put his hands on her. She became vulnerable, weak, and taken advantage of. The next day, the same woman, Christine, gets into a terrible accident where she is stuck in a flipped over car dripping in gasoline. Officer Ryan quickly approaches the scene with caution and sees the woman. He immediately gets in the car to try to save her, but as soon as she met his glance she completely lost it. She screamed out, “No! Keep your filthy fucking hands off me” (Haggis). The only person that can save her was the very same person who assaulted her: catch twenty two.

After coming to the realization that he caused this woman to want to hang upside down in a gasoline covered car then by saved by him, John finally came to terms with his previous actions. He selflessly risks his life by jumping back into the car through shattered glass and gasoline to save the woman he violated. The tone of the scene left the audience inferring that this grace gave rise to the possibility of redemption. He redeemed himself by saving a life and now has the opportunity to bring honor to the force rather than shame.

This film does an exemplary job of highlighting the possibility of redemption brought out by moments of pure grace. Each character is given the incredible opportunity to redeem themselves, and most of the cast fully understand the miracle that is grace. The film suggests that there is always redemption. That no matter how far you stray from making the right decisions, there is always a way to redeem yourself. These characters were blessed to come to terms with their past and bad decision making and are able to turn everything around and give out positive vibes to others because it.

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