Monday, July 28, 2008

Trouble is my business

Trouble is My Business could also be called 90 Minutes with Mr Peach. Mr Peach is the assistant principal (not to be confused with the deputy principal) at Aorere College in Papatoetoe in South Auckland and his brief is student management. His day involves monitoring who is and isn't behaving, chasing truants, administering discipline, talking to parents and CYF, liaising with the guidance counselor, the truancy officer and the school administration and motivating staff and students.

The film focuses on his dealing with three particular students and we get a pretty privileged insight into their lives and his. The interactions with these students give us an idea what the rewards of his frenetic job are and what drives him. We find out that Mr Peach grew up in Otara, became a father at fifteen and is married to a Cook Island Maori so we get some clues into what gives him his credibility and the student's respect.

Gary Peach is amazing to watch. Smartly dressed in shirt and tie (often accompanied by fringed straw sunhat and wraparound sunglasses in tune with his South Auckland environment) he strides around the school grounds armed with a megaphone alternately doling out greetings and instructions to pick up litter or get to back to class. We see him get in his car to go in pursuit of miscreants and truant. He talks a lot. He cares a lot. He has lots of energy and never gives up. Trouble is My Business is compelling viewing and since one of the conditions of making the film was that it would never be shown on TV you have to make the effort to go.

Anne's rating 5/5.

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