Young James struggles as the outsider kid at his school. His teacher, Mr. Sutherland, the only person he feels he can connect with. When James finally puts a voice to his feelings, Mr. Sutherland's response isn't what James had hoped for.
Ultimately I wanted to like this a lot more than I did. The entire cast are uniformly excellent but the script is far too compact, silly and unsettling for comfort.
The lead kid is a decent actor and he plays the weak 'follower' to the letter, but the writers wait until almost the end of the series before he finally stands up to his extremely angry and dangerous best friend, whom were supposed to believe is really a nice kid but his dysfunctional parents have made him so angry that he has become a defiant little criminal-in-the-making.
Close on his criminal heels is his friend the 'follower' who also has a problem with authority and pretty much says and does what he damn well pleases ... until almost the end of the series when we get an "aw shucks" bit of predictable sentiment. The problem in, this is too complex of a story for its own good and the writers attempt to wrap it up in a sweet feel-good ending, came off to me as naive and just plain insulting to the potential that was there.
Another issue I had was with the parent characters, Am I to believe that in Norway, parents don't have a clue in how to discipline their little adolescent brats. Even when their kids have been involved in criminal behavior, it is still treated like an episode of the Brady Bunch.
Only this isn't Bobby putting an umbrella through dad's convertible roof, this is kids building bombs from on-line instructions and stolen military blanks, jumping from seriously high and dangerous cliffs, shooting steel-tipped arrows into the air and then playing chicken as they jettison back down and indirectly being responsible for a serious injury one character, and what could have been death to another.
Apparently the Norwegian police are as dumb as the parents in the film, because despite catching boys in criminal behavior, they seem OK with the little munchkins just getting grounded by their clueless push-over parents!
Overall I found this show to border on irresponsibility and wallowing in implausibility. If this is an example of what they serve up in Norway as a family-friendly mini-series, then we're in trouble. The sad thing is, I have seen some great Norwegian feature films that unlike this poorly written short-lived TV series, actually boasts intelligence and substance.
Too bad, because the cast is so great; if only they had a script that honored their talent.
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