5.9/10
673
6 user 12 critic

I Want to Be a Soldier (2010)

De mayor quiero ser soldado (original title)
Alex, an eight-year-old boy, seems to have a macabre fascination for violent images that he sees on television. After his two brothers are born, he feels lonely, and he makes up two ... See full summary »

Director:

Christian Molina
Reviews
1 win & 3 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Fergus Riordan Fergus Riordan ... Alex
Cameron Antrobus Cameron Antrobus ... David (as Cameron George Antrobus)
Andrew Tarbet ... Richard (Alex's father)
Josephine Barnes Josephine Barnes ... Paula
Luke Denton Luke Denton ... Zac
Ben Temple ... Captain Harry / Sergeant John Cluster
Jo Kelly Jo Kelly ... Amy (Alex's mother)
Thomas Riordan Thomas Riordan ... Eric (Max's brother)
Danny Glover ... School Director
Cassandra Gava ... Art teacher
Robert Englund ... Psychologist
Laura Fabregat Laura Fabregat ... Helene (2 years)
Alejandro Gómez Alejandro Gómez ... Victor (2 years) (as Alejandro Gomez)
Marc Medina Marc Medina ... Alex (2 years)
Joan Hostench Martínez Joan Hostench Martínez ... Max
Edit

Storyline

Alex, an eight-year-old boy, seems to have a macabre fascination for violent images that he sees on television. After his two brothers are born, he feels lonely, and he makes up two imaginary friends. Hurt and betrayed, he blackmails his father to get a television for his room. Through television, he discovers the violence of wars, and he is left fascinated. Written by Black Flag

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Is your family a safe environment?

Genres:

Drama

Certificate:

See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Spain | Italy

Language:

English

Release Date:

14 October 2011 (Italy) See more »

Also Known As:

I Want to Be a Soldier See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital

Color:

Color (Fujicolor)| Color

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »

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User Reviews

An interesting premise but falls a bit short...
25 August 2011 | by ELKronosSee all my reviews

I wanted to like this movie. The synopsis intrigued me, and the trailer led me to believe that there was some potential. However, what do you get when a Spanish director/writer use British actors to depict a portrayal of violence and the media in the United States? A lot of confusion.

This movie is well shot, conveys a message, and has several actors who, for better or worse, evoke an emotional response from the viewer. Sadly, the message conveyed is largely inaccurate (everything from the impact media has on children, to the notion of the permanence of death - which develops well before the age of 10 mind you, is one sided or flat out wrong), and aside from being a character piece for a few of the actors to showcase their talent, the film provides little novelty to the 'good child gone bad' genre as a whole. Although several of the characters come to life, they are poorly written, and at times, flat. As the movie progresses, it is almost as if the writer / director wrap up every stereotype about how the media is a terrible influence on children and serve it to the viewer on an over-sized platter.

Due to the message conveyed (repeatedly) in this film, it comes off as preachy, which makes it hard to enjoy the movie, let alone be surprised by the manner in which the plot unfolds. Had the writer / director approached the issue with more tact, knowledge, and attempted to make the rise of Alex's behavioral issues more ambiguous, I think they would have had an independent gem. While the film brings up interesting questions about the beliefs parents have about their children, and showcases how many problems children face may be averted if parents would simply pay more attention to their child, the total transparency of the film overshadows these questions, preventing the viewer from making up their own mind let alone think about how these issues arise in society in any meaningful way. Basically, the expectancy mark this film set for itself was not reached.

Overall, this film is likely worth a rent, and may provide an interesting insight into the view foreign countries hold about the violent media in the United States. Although, I am unsure if the director/writers of this film honestly believe the message about the evilness of the media, or if they were just too lazy to accurately highlight a possible social problem. Regardless, just approach this film with an open mind, and do not expect anything new, sharp, or thought provoking.


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