Boy A Reviews
Jack, played by Andrew Garfield, is a young man who's in transition to gain a new future. He was sent to prison for a crime he committed as a child. Terry, played by Peter Mullen (Trainspotting, Children of Men) is the one person who has faith and sees the good in him. His new life starts good, he gets a job, meets a girl and falls in love. But the past woun't leave him alone...
John Crowley, the director, tells the story of Jack using flashbacks. This suits the film perfectly, as the viewer gains little by little more information about this sympathetic character.
"Boy A" is somewhat of a brutal, morally complex film. Should people be given a second chance? Will the guilt of your past be stronger than your will to find happiness in life?
The strongest factor in "Boy A" is its lead actors. I can't recall when was the last time I saw such a strong performance, as Andrew Garfield's performance as Jack? His future, If he upholds the same level as in "Boy A", couldn't be any brighter. All of the actors do an excellent job and they show us perfect examples on how to reach the viewers heart.
The cinematography and sound department are simple but effective. The sets are pretty ascetic but they leave more attention to the actors work.
After my first viewing, I really can't find anything negative to say about this film. "Boy A" is a film that touched me. And that doesn't happen often. A perfect achievement in acting, or filmmaking in general, "Boy A" should be viewed by everyone who enjoy serious cinema.
After watching this film, for those who saw the end..."the crime", I had a dream that night that I was doing the same thing to my younger brother! Weird!
Certain parts of the film led me and (I'm sure others) to recall a very similar well known British case.
The actions to the film lead you to make your own opinions and your mind is questioning every part of this dilemma.
Superbly acted, gritty, emotional, real hard hitting stuff with a controversial issue. Amazing! Kudos to the Director and leading actor for this one.
[font=Century Gothic]"Boy A" is a competent and well-acted social drama that is hampered by a couple of plot contrivances. The movie is about the notions of responsibility and rehabilitation and asks if any one person's life is completely without worth. The answer is simply that we all need somebody who loves us. Jack is no longer the same person he was when he was a kid, ne Eric Wilson(Alfie Owen). At the time, he was victimized by older bullies, was ignored by his father(Leigh Symonds) while his mother(Maria Gough) was seriously ill. Into the abyss, steps Philip(Taylor Doherty), a kid his own age that protects him from the bullies. But as an adult, he has a social network of people who accept him(they think he used to steal cars) and a loving father figure in Terry. [/font]
And on another note that doesn't have to do with any important in the movie...I really enjoyed Andrew Garfield Spaz-tastic dancing. Boy has got moves.
I mean, he did something bad as a kid, because his BFF 'told' him to. In some cases, this would be like your parent telling you to do something. They tell you to do something, even if you think it's bad, but you do it because they're the authority. Putting him in jail for 10 years isn't going to fix him at all, and probably would screw him up a little. But I just think it's stupid.
At the core of what succeeds in the film is the truly great central performance. The acting is, in general, top notch but Andrew Garfield truly stands out by delivering a deceptively simple performance as the titular Boy A. Having spent most of his life in an institution, he has the emotional development of a child. His fragility and tenderness would be comical if they were not constantly at odds with his feelings of guilt. He provides for the film everything it needs: its tone, its mood, its pacing. It responds in turn by being structured around him. Had the film been exclusively about him and his attempts to start a life it might well have been a masterpiece.
Unfortunately, the screenplay has other ideas. A subplot involving our lead's parole officer and his son is completely pointless, existing solely as a device with which to bring about the final catalyzing event. The use of symbolism in a particular scene (the knife, more evident during the closing scenes) is appallingly obvious to the point of distraction. The romance, while well acted, feels more like the artificial construct of an overeager screenwriter, particularly since our female lead, described as intelligent and quick-witted, all but threw herself at this awkward, socially retarded puppy-dog without having so much as spoken to him in a series of sequences that make little, if any, sense. The screenplay also feels the need to artificially punch up the danger via unnecessary flashbacks, a violent scene that contradicts all we know of our boy Jack, and even deus ex machina. The film's ending is a particularly bad offender, relying on a series of improbable (if not impossible) circumstances in order to unfold the way it did.
What we are left with, then, is a film that is as great as it is mediocre. Every stunning moment is undermined by artificiality not long after, but the reverse is also true. As a whole "Boy A" is a good film that is disappointing only because of how great it was allowed to be at times.