Wednesday, Sep. 28, 2011

About a Boy (2002)

Marcus, an eccentric 12-year-old boy has a complicated home life: His mother is depressed and suicidal and he is eager to please her, adopting her odd style of dress and vegetarianism. For this, he is alternately avoided and ridiculed by his classmates. Even the self-professed "weirdo" kids in his school don't want to associate with him.

When Marcus meets immature philanderer, Will, he begins to use his apartment as a sanctuary from the bullies who chase him after school. Will initially encourages Marcus to appear like the other kids, but when he buys Marcus new sneakers to try to fit in, his classmates promptly steal them. Marcus is unique because he is somewhat defiant of his bullies. He knows, as Will suggests, that if he tried to blend in more, he might not be such an obvious target. But he is willing to take the abuse and isolation at school because of his overriding love for his mother. Such strength of character is remarkable, and it pays off: In the end, Marcus is able to find happiness and social support without having to change himself.