Diary of a Wimpy Kid 

In this clip from Diary of a Wimpy Kid, an older brother advises his little brother how to explain his bad grade to his parents. His brother's advice consists of explaining that you thought you failed and probably didn't pass therefore lowering their expectations for when they receive the actual test grade. He then explains to his parents that really, he had received a C- leaving his parents almost happy and relieved because they were expecting that he had failed. He was able to lower his parents expectations of him therefore when the outcome was much better than they expected, they were happy that at least he hadn't done as bad as he expected. 

A Cinderella story

In the movie A Cinderella Story, a teenage boy struggles when acknowledging all his fathers expectations of him. Growing up, his father had always thought of his son as playing USC football when he attended college, and never acknowledged what his son truly wanted and only sought to see his own expectations. When growing up, it is always hard to live up to our parents expectations of ourselves, especially when our own expectations conflict with theirs. Austin Ames (Chad Michael Murry) plays the high school student who is forced to pretend that his fathers dreams are really his own as well. Although he tries to make his father see his perspective and dreams, his father struggles as well thinking that he knows what is best for his child and the only answer to that is playing USC football. When the time comes, Austin finally shares with his father his own aspirations, attending Princeton University without a football scholarship, and his father is shocked and astonished due to the fact that all along he had thought that his son also wanted what he had. 

Finding Nemo

After the tragic death of Marlin's wife, Coral, to a terrrible shark attack, Marlin is only left with one egg surviving and he promises to take care of his son with and never let anything happen to him. As Nemo grows old, his fathers expectations of him are extremely high, never letting him leave their sea anemone without checking three times for sharks. His father puts off attending school for a year because he does not want anything to happen to his son. When Nemo finally attends school, he goes on a field trip to the barrier reef and his new friends dare him to go out to sea to touch the boat in the distance. Marlin learns that they are at the barrier reef and quickly panics, swimming all the way there to drag Nemo home. Nemo does not want to listen to his father anymore and find his expectations of him staying a child forever are rediculously unrealistic. He decides to show his father thats hes an adult by swimming out to sea. When doing this, he gets captured by a S.C.U.B.A. diver. Marlin sets out, determined to find his son because he promised his wife he would always protect him and Nemo was the only family he had left. As Marlin's adventure begins as he sets out to find Nemo, he begins to think that if he has just lowered his expectations of his son, Nemo would have never rebelled.  


Entering the year 2012, the rumors of the world ending seemed like a made up belief that was bound to never happen. When the day came, some expected the worst and said their goodbyes while some would have never expected the world to ever end. When the world began to fall apart, panic was the only emotion the world felt. No one would have expected that this peaceful and beautiful world we live in would ever fall apart and be destroyed. We take advantage of our valuable resources because we tend to not expect the worst which might benefit our world. When we expect the worst, we prevent the worst from actually happening and in this case would have left the world to stay as it was in the beginning for much longer. Since 2012 has not occurred yet, we can only expect that the world will end especially after watching this graphic movie showing the horrifying details of what is in store for us in just one more year. 


Accepted; In the movie Accepted, high school students begin their decision making process regarding where they will be attending college. One boy, being accepted into none of his choices, is embarrassed and frantic about what his parents, along with his peers, will think of him. Coming up with no other solutions, he decided to create his own acceptance letter into an unknown of college with a similar name to a very known college in the movie, thinking his parents will never find out. When the time comes for him to go to school, his parents drop him off at what really is an abandoned hospital, and he tries to create a mock university. This movie is an example of how societies expectations, such as attending College upon high school graduation, pressures us to do what ever it takes to satisfy others. 

The Last Song 

In the movie The Last Song a high school student named Ronnie (Miley Cyrus) was extremely talented and gifted and took after her father on the piano. Growing up she had a lot of achievements on the piano and was well known for how talented she was and how capable she was of achieving greatness. When her parents got a divorce, somewhere along the line the divorce affected her and made her unwilling to even touch a piano and disregarded it completely. When she was still focused on playing the piano, extremely high expectations were set before her about her attending Juliard as part of her future. When she decided to abandon the piano, Juliard became something that to her was completely out of the question, but to her absent father and mother it was what they continued to hope and dream that she would attend. When she was forced to live with her father for a summer, she began a relationship with a boy whose family put a similar expectation upon him about attending Vanderbilt, where the family had years of legacy which they wanted to maintain. Truthfully, no matter how important Vanderbilt had been to his family, his own dreams conflicted due to him always aspiring to attend Columbia in New York. The two make a special bond and relate to each other due to everything placed before them. When Ronnie's father got ill with cancer, which she learned while staying with him, she began to make amends with what happened during the divorce, and as he got weaker and weaker strived to meet all his expectations such as continuing a piece of art that he had started and expected to complete, as well as continuing with the piano and attending Juliard. Her boyfriend Will, learned to disregard his expectations set before him and did what he pleased and transfered to Columbia after a semester at Vanderbilt when he came to the realization that he was unhappy and that he was not doing it for himself but to please his family. 

The Blind Side

The Blind Side is a story about a homeless boy named Michael who was found/ noticed by the Tuohy family and was taken into their home. Michael, being homeless, did not attend school for a large period of time and when found, the Tuohys enrolled him into their private school that their daughter and son attended hoping that Michael would receive a good education as well. When the sport season came around, the Tuohys noticed that Michael would be perfect for football. When they realized his talent and ability, he became an immediate star on and off the field and a true part of the Tuohy's household. Due to his talent, a bunch of schools began to scout Michael, and the Tuohys were hoping that he would be able to play for their Alma Mater Ole Miss. Although Michael did not have good grades at all, they had faith in him, and they hired a tutor that they knew would be able to get him to where he needed to be in order to play for Ole Miss, or any school for that matter. Michael was treated as though he could achieve anything (self-fulfilling prophecy) and ultimately when the time came around he was given the opportunity to play at the school, and then continued into the NFL. When Michael was originally found, he had absolutely no education, no real family, and absolutely no idea about football. The Tuohys gave him the opportunity to learn and succeed and meet their expectations, which were ultimately not too high, and Michael got to where he himself wanted to be, along with the Tuohys. Although along the way people thought the Tuohys were crazy, especially since their area was somewhat racist, and people doubted Michaels ability to learn in school along with playing the game. They did not let others opinions affect their ultimate goal and they were willing to go against what was considered "normal," in their community and raise Michael to be the best he could be. 

Raising Helen 

In the movie Raising Helen, expectations are placed upon three sisters relationships. Helen thought as though she had her entire life ahead of her and was living and enjoying her life and what was in store for her future. She began a successful career and had the ability to enjoy her young age until the unexpected happened and her older sister passed away in a car crash along with her husband. When the time came to read the will, Helen along with her other sister Jenny, was in complete awe and disbelief when the will read that Helen would be in custody of here sisters three kids. Jenny, was in the position and mindset that she would be in charge of the kids due to her motherly presence and actions, along with the fact that she already had kids of her own along with one on the way. Helen, being much younger than Jenny, was completely unprepared to take on the responsibility but felt obligated to her deceased sisters wishes. Her sister, without communicating with her any of these plans in the scenario if she were to die, had expected that Helen, being most similar to her, would want and be capable of doing so. Jenny had always expected that this would not be the case and expected that if Helen did take on this responsibility that she would fail miserably. Helen proved herself and her sister wrong, and changed her entire life style and did not want to disappoint her deceased sister and became the best Motherly role model that she could possibly be despite all the obstacles that came in her way. 

The Pursuit Of Happiness 

The Pursuit of Happiness tells the story of a father who had a minimum wage job, had not attended college, and whose wife walked out on him, endures the struggles of trying to make his life better for himself and his young son. Coming from his background, he had expected that he would be able to give his son much more than what he has been able too, and strives to do so. After being walked out on and raising a child alone, he struggles to make any income at all, and was kicked out of his house and forced to live in homeless shelters and sometimes in train station bathrooms when the circumstances forced him to do so. When one day walking amongst the streets, he stops in admiration of a young mans car and out of curiosity asks what the man happens to do for a living. The man replied and told Chris Gardner (Will Smith) that he is a stock broker. Having almost no income at all, Chris applies for a job at the offices where the stock broker had worked, and then later learns that the job that he had been hired for, an intern, has no income pay. Hoping that he will make it in the industry, he decides to keep this job, although he knows how badly it will hurt himself and his child. He continues with the job, and shares with no one  his lack of education, knowing they lower their expectations and underestimate his capabilities thinking that he has absolutely no chance in the industry. He manages to act as though he is on the same financial level as others, trying to improvise and seem that he is capable of everything that the other, well off men around him. Chris stays focused on the ultimate goal, and studies harder than his peers, and when the time comes around to take the test to enter the Stock Market Chris's score amazes everyone around him. Chris exceeds his own expectations as well when told of his score, and was hired at one of the best firms in the world. The outcome these events went far beyond anything that Chris could have ever imagined, as he one day opened his own firm, and became a multi-millionaire with a shocking story behind his success. The film shares how when you allow yourself to exceed even your own expectations, that you can accomplish anything you set yourself out to do. 

13 Going on 30

The 13 year old can't stand her life and just wants to grow up already. She thinks being older is the best thing that will ever happen to her and can't wait to grow up. On her 13th birthday she wishes to become 30 already. Upon waking up, she realizes her wish came true and she cannot remember the last 20 years of her life. She finds out that she was exactly what she hoped to be in high school, popular and pretty. After living her new 30 year old life, she realizes she didn't stay close with her family or friends and her new "friends" are back stabbers. She see's that being grown up isn't all that great and not at all what she expected. She wants to return to 13 so badly and when she finally does change back- she decides to do whatever it takes to have a life exactly the opposite of what she went through. She treats her family and her best friend, whom truly loves her, way better and in the end- she received her fairy tale life. 

Life As We Know It 

Life As We Know it shares a very similar plot to that of Raising Helen. In Life As We Know it the characters Messer and Holly's best friends have a one year old daughter named Sophie. Messer and Holly try to set up the two godparent's hoping that since they know Holly and Messer better than anyone else in the world, would make a great couple. Their date is a complete failure on Peter and Allison's part, and they come to despise each other. One day, they get a devastating phone call that their best friends have died in a fatal car accident and did not survive. They are called to meet at their friends home, and a lawyer meets them to read them the will that Allison had Peter left behind regarding Sophie. When being read, the lawyer shares that they have placed Sophie under joint custody of Holly and Messer. Peter and Allison expected that they would be willing to do anything for their god child no matter what the circumstances, and although Holly agrees to this request, Messer does not feel ready to take on these responsibilities. Ultimately the two "enemies," decide to act upon their best friends wishes, and move into their friends home together to try to come up with a successful plan to raise their goddaughter. The movie tells us how to expect the unexpected in relationships because although Holly's first impressions of Messer on their first date were horrible, she looks past those impressions and the story ultimately becomes a love story as Messer and Holly realize that their friends were right all along, and that they are made for one another. 

The Kings Speech 

The Kings Speech is the story of King George VI's descent to the throne. The new king, being that he is a king, is more than expected to be a good public speaker due to that throughout his career as king, he will need to make plenty of speeches and public appearances. He knows that these things come along with the expectations of being a king, but what the public does not know is that George is a stammerer. George tries to live up to his expectations and present himself as well as his ancestry that lied before him, and in doing so hires a speech therapist and tries and struggles present a stammer free speech. The speech therapist learns a lot about all the pressures of George growing up, and feels fully confident that George will be able to accomplish the task. He shows George that he believes in him, and sets his own expectations of accomplishment before George who in the end, accomplishes his goal.