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AFI research collection
Reference Type chapter
Title Scenes from a childhood boy
Chapter/Web article title Screen Education
Author(s)Brian MacFarlane
State Unknown
Country Unknown
Publication Date 01-03-2007
Citation Date
Page Number 10-16
Comments This article discusses the main topics throughout the film Romulus My Father and how the issues such as death, family struggles, growing up and witnessing things a young boy shouldn’t witness and how they place such demands on Rai. McFarlane describes how Rai a 10 year old boy going through the processes of growing up, is greatly influenced by his family, especially his parents, Hora, teachers and other elders. Rai goes through a lot as a young boy and has to cope with numerous life changing events most 10 year olds never have to face. There are moments in the film which we as the audience are right there with Rai witnessing the same things, such as being present at his mother’s suicide attempt, caring for his baby sister as his mother lies there listlessly, seeing his mother disappear with another man to see them having sex, he witnesses a fight between His father and Hora, and watches as Hora slaughters and buries alive the entire lot of diseased chickens in front of his eyes. He sees his father in the psychiatric hospital is left alone in the home by himself while his father is in hospital and is aware but uninformed of two suicides. The article also covers the scene in which Romulus my Father is set, and how the film has similarities to other films such as Storm Boy (1976) , Blue Fin (1978) , The Devil’s Playground (1976), and Wish(2006), in which these other coming of age films were also set in coastal towns.

This article while being jam-packed of information doesn’t greatly help with the topic of suicide and how the issue of mental health and its consequences are represented in the film. While it discusses that Rai is present and learning about life and growing up while these issues occur it doesn’t justify how these issues are represented other than the fact Rai has to deal with them as a 10 year old boy. (Kiralyn Ridley)

tags: Blue Fin Romulus My Father Storm Boy The Devil's Playground Wish 
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