Hidden Figures

This is my first movie review. This review is not going to be analytical at all, but instead will be me recounting my entire experience with the movie.

This review does NOT contain spoilers.

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I saw the movie Hidden Figures on the day it came out. My grandmother and I went to go see it at the Westgate Theatre in South Austin using the free tickets I had been given earlier in the week. Funny story about those tickets.

On Wednesday, January 11th, the Central Market and Westgate Theatre by Ann Richards came to our school. They wanted to do something nice for some local high school seniors, and we were the closest. They gave each of us two free movie tickets and a $20 Central Market gift card with the intention of us taking a friend to see Hidden Figures and eat at the cafe in Central Market. Once the representatives left, the teachers handed out the envelopes containing the card and tickets and told us we could use the tickets to see any movie and we didn’t have to use the gift card at the cafe. One teacher told us that the admin of the school were thinking about going on a field trip to see Hidden Figures, but nothing had been confirmed. That evening I made plans with my Grandmother to see Hidden Figures on Friday the 13th.

Life proceeded as normal until Friday afternoon. The seniors had a class meeting, and at these meeting we were told that next Wednesday, January 18th, we would be going on a field trip to see Hidden Figures. The problem with this is that I already had plans to use both my tickets, so I wouldn’t go on the field trip. I didn’t think it would be a big deal, but then the senior class vice president told me that the field trip was mandatory. I said “I made these plans before this field trip was even a solid idea, I’m going to see Hidden Figures with my grandmother tonight. I’ll just stay at school and work on scholarships when everyone else goes. And what can the admin even do to me anyway? We’re about to graduate!” And I went outside to meet up with my grandma.

Grandma and I ate at Olive Garden, visited the kittens at Tomlinson’s, then we went to Westgate. And guess what we discovered? Our free tickets weren’t free! There was a $1.50 surcharge to use them. Upon further reflection the next day, I realized that the surcharge was probably because we were seeing an evening movie. But in the moment we were very confused, though we still paid the fee and got our tickets and seat numbers, B4 and B5. We were going to be very close to the left corner of the screen.

Before we went into the theatre itself, we stopped by the bathrooms. While Grandma and I were washing our hands, an old lady started talking to us. She had heard me telling Grandma that the rest of the senior class would be seeing the movie next week. The lady had just seen the movie herself. She told us that she remembered segregation. Even hospitals were segregated. Black patients were on the highest floor of the hospital and were given the oldest equipment. The lady told us she knew a black man who started out at the bottom on the hospital staff, but worked his way up to the top. Any doctor who wanted to buy new equipment more than a few thousand dollars had to ask for his permission. I liked that lady and her story.

Finally we made our way into the theatre. Grandma and I were pleasantly surprised to find that the seats reclined! This made us worry a lot less about being in the second row. We reclined our seats back and settled in to watch the movie.

The movie was really good! The characters were funny and sassy, and were played by great actors and actresses. There were a lot of emotional moments, both happy and sad. The story was inspiring and relatable. It was the kind of movie that caused the entire theatre to laugh and gasp as one. It really makes you think about our society as well. These women are the reason why we got to space, so why don’t we learn about them in school? Why don’t we talk about the women who went through so much at work and still came every day to do their job? Why don’t we talk about the African-American women who were played a vital part in a huge event of our history?

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