DVD Review; A Boy Called Dad (15)

“A film that tries too hard to hammer home too much social realism”

DVD Review by Debbie Davies

A Boy Called Dad (15)

Released on August 16

Ian Hart and Kyle Ward

Written by Julie Rutterford and directed by Brian Percival

A Boy Called Dad tells the story of Robbie who has just become a father at the tender age of 14. When his girlfriend refuses to let him see the child and he witnesses her new boyfriend mistreating the baby he snatches his son and goes on the run.

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Up until this point we have a powerful gritty drama that promises to confront some tough 21st Century issues with compassion and humour. The drab landscape of the Wirral serves to add to the hopelessness of Robbie’s life and the relationship with his father (Hart) who abandoned him as a toddler. What we end up with is a film that tries too hard to hammer home too many points. Yes we know desperate people do desperate things but when Robbie goes from being a bit of a scallywag to a tearaway who has access to guns it feels like the social realism is galloping along too fast and out of control.

Some of the scenes with Robbie and his baby son are brilliantly done, but the deteriorating relationship with his own father is the film’s strong point. Hart plays the feckless father desperate to make amends to perfection.

Definitely worth a watch, I just wish the second half of the film had been as evenly paced as the first instead of swinging out of control.