Almost like an amateur home movie made by school kids
I watched this at school when I was 9, and remember it being "amazing".
So 24 years later, I track it down with the following memories: a) it might feature the word snow in the title, b) a boy looks down a train track and says "it's your fault. It's all your fault". c) said boy accidentally kills someone, and then carves wooden animals from his guilt/shame outcast life.
I managed to track it down, and watch the last nostalgic relic from my childhood. Did it live up to my expectations?
No! Whilst watchable for nostalgia's sake, there are many disturbing things about this film. The soundtrack is completely inappropriate. The acting is dreadful - the girl can even be seen laughing in the corner of one shot whilst her grandma tells her something "important". A man scales a cliff-face to find his son twisted up and looking dead at the bottom - to which he says "Danny, Danny are you OK?" in a light-hearted voice.
Far worse though, is that any moral goodness in the religious story is completely swamped and buried under bizarre contrived acts. We're expected to believe that its good that a boy ditches school and shacks up with an old man, a stranger, who confesses to be a criminal. When the boy suggests leaving, the man persuades him to stay, being his "only friend". What kind of message is this sending out to children? Other contrivances send the story into sentimental overload, so much so that the main point of the morality seemed to unravel in favour of "feel good" factor.
I don't even know if I would show this to children now. In hindsight, I found it strange watching it as a child. You're asked to root for the guilty kid, and this made me feel a confused sense of guilt, shame and sadness as well for absolutely no reason.
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