The Notebook (2004)
Commentary by Rudy Palma, November 2005

This movie was an excellent, extremely well-received tale of romance between two young persons, Allie and Noah, in the 1940's. However, within the movie is positive commentary on short-statured individuals.

Noah's friend Finn is particularly shorter than him, and although his character is not large, it is centrifugal to the plot. When we first meet both characters as young men together at a carnival, the first sign we see of Finn is a man running a booth at the carnival yelling "little man wins a prize!" and throwing his prize at him.

However, he lets this roll off his back and then becomes most important to the plot by telling Noah all about Allie, who is riding the bumper cars along with his girlfriend. He then tells his girlfriend about how he won a prize for her, and she yells excitedly "thank you Finn!"

From that moment on, in each scene with the two of them throughout the movie, it is easy to see Finn's girlfriend is absolutely crazy about him, even though she is in fact a little bit taller than he is. It is quite touching. His character is later brought to an end, however, when he is killed while serving in World War II alongside Noah, which they both volunteered for.

I find that the character of Finn, while not a large one, presents short guys in a fine light. His height is not important at all to the plot; he is a perfectly normal young guy who enjoys the company of his buddy, his girlfriend, and dutifully enlists in the army on his own accord. Although he does veer close to the "I'm short so I'm going to make up for it by acting like I'm Mr. Macho," sterotype, it is nothing over the top, and he is after all a young teenager. It is nice to see a short guy given a role like this with his height not being at all an issue of the plot.

palmarua@shu.edu