Movie Review: Boy A
Well, it seems as though the movie theme has yet to end. About a week ago, my boyfriend and I watched a movie he’d picked up from the library: Boy A. It’s a British movie about a guy, probably about our age (college-ish) who just got out after 14 years in prison. It was a very interesting movie and would encourage people to watch it as it definitely opened my eyes to some issues that a released convict faces. Obviously, I don’t know how accurate all of this was, but it seemed that the movie at least created a very realistic world in which the character Jack has to live.
I can’t imaging spending all of my time between childhood and adulthood inside a prison. Jack is almost like a foreigner from a country that had no TV, nothing to help him understand modern jokes or cultural norms. He never learned how to relate socially. He only knew relationships from prison and from childhood. It’s so interesting…and sad. I was quite often sad for the situation. A great deal of compassion came out of me for the character.
Another thing I appreciated about the film is the development of the character of Philip, Jack’s childhood friend who encouraged the violence that Jack picked up on. Philip, we find out, had been raped numerous times by his brother. He also lived in a home full of violence, which explains why he always reacted in violence towards anything he didn’t like. He never learned anything different. But the scene that I think holds a deep but sad truth is when Philip confesses the abuse to Jack. I tried to find a smaller clip, but couldn’t, so start watching from 6:55 to the end.
NOTE: There is some swearing, just so that you know. But I think that what Philip says really expresses the dissociation that abuse victims so often experience.
I have done some research on sexual violence specifically against men and boys. It’s an area we talk about even less than we talk about women victims. But the trauma that boys/men go through is just as a painful. According to Wilder’s report on Sexual Violence issues in Minnesota, it was estimated that about 12% of rape victims are men. And according to the National Center for Injury Prevention and Control 2008 Sexual Violence fact sheet, 69.2% of male victims were raped as children (before age 18). Males who were raped by another male are more likely to question their sexual orientation.