Monday, 21 July 2008

Films about Children

Lord of the Flies

The 400 Blows

The Bicycle Thieves

Continuing on the apocalyptic theme introduced by The Road, here are three harsh films about children: about the cruelties children can inflict on each other, the cruelties inflicted on children by the adult world and the cruelty a child inflicts on himself - or at least the tragic disappointments that a child suffers when his consciousness collides with socially accepted views of what his father has become.

Lord of the Flies is obviously apocalyptic and an allegory of the English class system, but the other films also have End Times elements, the sense of finality that comes with the loss of belief and trust, that sense of isolation and abandonment and loneliness that comes with betrayal by your family, friends and society.

This loss of belief is something that the boy in The Road doesn't experience - he has never experienced humanity or warmth or love even, but he always believes in those things. He retains the fire within that makes us human, but in a strange way the book is not about him, but about his father, a man who says one thing but does another, whose loss of belief and failure to retain his humanity stands in such opposition to his son's dignity and ultimate trust.


Katherine Leedale said...

Hollywood is planning a film of 'The Road'

It's going to star Viggo Mortensen and Charlize Theron.

I would have thought that in order to make a film that the general public will want to see, allthe bleak beauty and delicacy of the book, all its tiny changes in rhythm, everything that makes it interesting, will be ruined. It'll most likely turn out as a zombie flesh-cruncher without a brain.

How do you think it would turn out?

colin pantall said...

I don't like the book, Katherine , but Walter Salles (who does a good road movie)is the director and Viggo Mortensen was great in both History of Violence and Eastern Promises( Definitely one of the best British films of the last few decades).

So I think it will turn out pretty well.

colin pantall said...

Katherine, it's On the Road they're making, not The Road (which I love)- the latter could be a great movie but difficult with its mix of George Romero, Mad Max and Omega Man tied in with the rhythm and delicacy you mention. Viggo Mortensen as the man would be interesting casting.

Anonymous said...

Sorry Katherine - they are making The Road as a movie. I'm confusing myself completely with The Road/On the Road thing. It'll be good as long as they don't make it too tender.


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