NMPSPE Film Festival, Day XX: Paris (Texas), PARCC and the “Open-Ended Response”

Not only does PARCC go to “Eleven,” as our Film Festival pointed out yesterday, it also features the chance for kids to write “open-ended responses” to deeper questions eliciting and examining their higher level critical thinking skills.  Or so they say.  The always great Curmudgucation blog has a wonderful explanation of “Why Critical Thinking Won’t Be on the Test” in reality, as critical thinking and standardized testing are an impossible pair that will never quite see eye-to-eye.

And for today’s Film Festival selection, we go with another impossible pair and an impossibly beautiful pair of speeches made inside a Houston strip club at the end of Wim Wenders’ (and Sam Shephard as screenwriter) “Paris, Texas” (1984).  I read via Twitter and such that some ne’er do well, rapscallion, scalawag, prankster kids are using the “open-ended responses” of PARCC to write non sequitur essays on how President Bush (or Obama) was behind 9/11 and recitations of the story of how Will Smith’s character became the “Prince of Bel-Air.”

If I were one of those ne’er do well kids, a scalawag seeking to prank PARCC, I’d try to memorize these two speeches and see if the essay boxes were big enough to handle them.  Besides the rapscallion potential, it’s also true they are two of the greatest speeches in movie history.  Maybe the greatest.



Have a great weekend, everybody.


P.S.:  I wonder what kind of score those Craigslist PARCC graders would give these speeches…


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