The film is dedicated to the memory of Al Boughen, 1933-2010, the real-life park ranger who inspired the character of Al Thorpe, and who was mentor to director Dan Hartley when he was a teenager, in the same way that Al Thorpe is to Tom Proctor in the film. See more »
[Tom is working for Al, the National Park ranger. He doesn't want to be there and thinks it is a waste of time. Al shows him how to saw a length of wood for a new stile he is making]
You ever used a saw before, lad?
Aye. Come over here and I'll show you how.
[Al rests his hand on the wood with his thumb sticking out. He rests the blade of the saw against the tip of his thumb]
See how I use me thumb to guide it.
I could cut me thumb off!
No you *won't*! Now listen! All ...
[...] See more »
"When Tom Proctor's dad dies, his world falls apart; his brother joins the army, his mum is threatened with eviction and Tom faces criminal prosecution after spreading manure over the local bank. All this changes however when Tom meets park ranger Al Thorpe in this inspiring story of two individuals overcoming adversity and finding true friendship."
The film is beautifully shot, and the landscapes alone are well worth 96 minutes of your time (Dan Mackie has won several awards for his cinematography in 'Lad').
The story tugs on the heartstrings in all the right places - you'll laugh, you'll cry, and above all you'll find the characters utterly compelling and believable. There's some wonderful comedic moments to counterpoint the emotional challenges facing the Tom and his mum, and Al's grand-daughter makes a very welcome appearance (certainly as far as Tom's concerned).
As a first time film-maker Dan Hartley does a brilliant job and the cast are both believable and engaging throughout, avoiding the trap of overplaying their roles. The film has won numerous awards at film festivals across the world and justifiably so.
I'm only sad that the film didn't find a mainstream distributor to get it into more cinemas.
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