I Am Sam
I Am Sam December 16th, 2010
In the movie I Am Sam, I will be discussing two elements of communication, facial expressions and the social exchange theory of relationships. I will be describing two different scenes of the movie to show how facial expressions are an important element of communication as well as two other scenes to show how the social exchange theory of relationships works in this movie.
During the final custody hearing to determine if Sam, who has the mentality level of a seven year old, is capable of raising his daughter Lucy on his own, it was apparently very easy for Mr. Turner to manipulate him into agreeing with him. Because of Sam’s facial expressions during this scene, we can determine that he was becoming
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Rita then has an emotional breakdown herself explaining that people like her feel “lost, little, and dispensable.” In the midst of her explaining this to Sam, she starts breaking down about how her husband is cheating on her with “someone far more perfect than her,” and how her “son hates her” and she “screams horrible things at her seven year old because he does not want to get in the car at the end of the day.” When Rita takes Sam to her house to prepare him for questioning the next day at the final custody hearing, Sam talks to her about her son, Willie. Sam tells Rita that she is so lucky because she can play with Willie anytime she wants, but she says he does not want to play with her. Sam told her that he does but “he thinks you do not want to play with him maybe.” Rita said it is ridiculous that Willie thinks she does not want to play with him because she does. The social exchange theory comes into play in this scene because it shows how Rita is helping Sam fight for custody of Lucy and Sam is helping Rita understand how Willie is feeling about her and how he is feeling neglected because neither one of his parents is around for him to be with. While Sam and Rita are eating and preparing Sam for the questioning at the trial the next day, they are both laughing and joking around and you can see in both their attitudes and demeanors that Sam talking to Rita about Willie helped a lot. At the end of the movie, Lucy’s foster mother, Randy, brings Lucy to