Boy A is a coming-of-age story starring Andrew Garfield as Jack. We first meet jack in a small non-descript room where he seems to be having a get to know you conversation with a father he has never met. It soon becomes clear that this isn’t quite the case; it feels more like someone being instructed on how to live under witness protection. Jack isn’t his real name; it’s the name he’s chosen to live under.
Witness protection isn’t quite right either, but it is a form of protection and a new chance at life. But trying to forget your past and fit into a society that you can’t relate to isn’t easy for Jack. You see jack hasn’t lived in society for most of his life, and now at age 24, he’s having to come to terms to a world where he feels like an alien, an impostor.
Jack does an amazing job of fitting in and soon becomes a hero after rescuing a little girl. Becoming a hero comes at a cost however.
Boy A is a gritty and emotional roller coaster ride that is driven by Andrew Garfield’s portrayal of a young mans battle with his inner demons and coming to terms with acceptance and love. He submerges himself in the role some completely that his performance mesmerises you into believing that you’re watching a true story unfold right before your eyes. Peter Mullan complements Garfield’s role with that of Jack’s care worker, looking after him like the son he never had the opportunity to love.
Social themes pop up all over the place in Boy A, the problem of a ‘fatherless generation’ brought on by high divorce rates is one, but the main theme is one of forgiveness; both the inability to accept forgiveness, and the unwillingness to offer forgiveness.
Boy A pretty much covers all facets of the emotional scale with moments of gut wrenching horror to the heights of pure joy, but ultimately it is a realistic story of struggle, one that is worth watching and one that rightfully deserves to be cemented in the top ten best DVDs of the year.
Reviewed by: Jonathan Read
Release date: January 26th, 2010
Aspect Ratio: 1.78 : 1
Director: Crowley, John
Length (Minutes): 101
Stars: Shaun Evans, Peter Mullan, Andrew Garfield