Hey, fellow Penn alumni (psst, Class of 2011 – that now includes you!): Did you catch President Amy Gutmann’s commencement address yesterday morning?
A self-proclaimed “movie buff,” Gutmann said she was inspired by the anniversary of the first Academy Awards ceremony and the presence of 2011 commencement speaker Denzel Washington to discuss the life lessons she’s drawn from her 10 favorite films. In case you missed it, here is a bullet-point version of Gutmann’s “Top 10 Things You Can Learn from the Favorite Movies of This Penn President” list:
10) The Wizard of Oz: “On life’s journey, brains, heart, and courage come in handy.”
9) Casablanca: “Dedicating ourselves to a higher purpose and deep loyalties are values we should always treasure.”
8 ) The Social Network: “Virtual relationships are no substitute for real ones.”
7) True Grit: “Perseverance pays off.”
6) Avatar: “Respect nature and each other.”
5) Titanic: “No ship or scheme or strategy is unsinkable.”
4) E.T.: “Phone home.”
3) Silence of the Lambs: “Gives a whole new meaning to having an old friend to dinner.”
2) Julie & Julia: “Despite what the doctors here say, everything really is better with butter.”
1) The King’s Speech: “Judge individuals not by their rank, but by their merit. And even more strikingly, it’s not always the case that what you say is more important than how you say it.”
The full video of Gutmann’s speech is below. What movies would you have included on your Top 10 list, and what did you learn from them?