Adapted from The Paul Street Boys, an autobiographical novel by Ferenc Molnar, GLORY is an unusually sensitive evocation of the pain of youth and the senselessness of war. Frail Nemecsek, a...
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Adapted from The Paul Street Boys, an autobiographical novel by Ferenc Molnar, GLORY is an unusually sensitive evocation of the pain of youth and the senselessness of war. Frail Nemecsek, a lonely boy who yearns to belong, worships Boka, the self-sufficent, charismatic leader of a well-organized gang, decked out in uniforms and sporting their own flag. The perennial outsider sees his chance to win a respected place in Butler's army when their flag is stolen and war breaks out with another gang. Written by
This is a bizarre and very heavy-handed film. Instead of showing adults at war, this film does war on a small scale--with children playing war. This isn't just kids playing war, but they have ranks, follow orders and act much like adults would in war. And, almost the entire film consists of kids acting--with only a few adults here and there. This strange idea seemed to impress most of the reviewers but I couldn't get into it--mostly because it all seemed rather fake and I also thought that children playing war and acting as if it's all lots of fun just seemed a bit grotesque. Although I know it was meant as an allegory about war and heroism and the futility of war--it seemed like it could also be taken as a pro-war film as well! As for the kids, all but Frankie Darro were unknowns and the acting, for kids, was pretty good. But it was also sappy from start to finish--and also made war seem pretty cool--like a recruitment film for the next war.
I guess I am a voice of dissent, but I didn't like the film--though I did at least respect the acting (for the most part) and give it a 4 simply for technical merit. Also, I nominate George P. Breakston for a special award for Best Performance By a Crazy Kid for his acting at the 61 minute mark. It has to be seen to be believed. Further, I nominate all the parents for the Most Irresponsible Parenting award for encouraging their little ragamuffins to become little warmongers.
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