Wednesday, November 05, 2008

alone in four walls

now is the time for an iron hand...


in russia, boys who break the law, but are too young to go to jail, are sent to state run reform schools. as one boy comments; they're like army camp with lessons. the boys who populate these schools may have stolen, been fighting or even committed murder: regardless of their crime, they have all ended up in the same place.

in the school, the boys seem live life in an extremely regimented, ordered and disciplined fashion: something which i can only assume institutionalises them for life. the fact that a couple of them make a point of stating that they need to stay in order to finish their schooling, as they don't have the will power to do so otherwise, and the fact that ninety-one percent of them will end up in a prison for adults, seems to lend credence to this thought.

the film is a fine watch and it gently allows the boys if focusses on (and a couple of family members) to tell their stories and talk about their thoughts on their life. unfortunately we don't get to hear any of the school staff, except for a couple of words from the dentist and nurse, and with the lack of narration or commentary the question of institutionalisation is never raised. a shame...

good stuff...

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