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Overall Rating

Worth A Look: 13.7%
Average: 16.44%
Pretty Bad: 2.74%
Total Crap: 1.37%

2 reviews, 61 user ratings

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Song for a Raggy Boy
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by Dr Nick

"Sad but predictable film about abuse in an Irish Catholic School"
3 stars

PREVIEW OF THE EDINBURGH INTERNATIONAL FILM FESTIVAL (Reviewed from advance video copy). Based on a true story of physical and sexual abuse in an Irish Catholic School, this was never going to be a laugh-riot.

William Franklin is the new teacher at an Irish Catholic School for boys. With a different attitude to teaching, he brings encouragement and support (both academical and personal) to the boys, something they have never experienced before.

For years, the other teachers have been allowed to abuse the children sexually and physically, but now it's time for a change.

It's the classic 'nice guy takes on the system and beats it' story. Mr Franklin teaches the children to read and tries to get them to look forward to life after school. Meanwhile, the evil Brother John tries to get rid of Franklin and turn the children against him. Nothing terribly original here. Even though it is quite predictable, the fact that it's based on a true story adds some emotional impact.

Worth watching for the good performances from both adults and children. What lets the film down is the extremely cheesy ending, not only reminiscent of but completely lifted from Dead Poet's Society.

Very depressing, and you can't help but feel that the children that had to go through this hell in real life are cheated by the happy ending

link directly to this review at
originally posted: 07/16/03 01:22:45
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OFFICIAL SELECTION: 2003 Edinburgh Film Festival. For more in the 2003 Edinburgh Film Festival series, click here.
OFFICIAL SELECTION: 2003 Sundance Film Festival. For more in the 2003 Sundance Film Festival series, click here.
OFFICIAL SELECTION: 2003 Seattle Film Festival. For more in the 2003 Seattle Film Festival series, click here.

User Comments

5/08/07 Skykid Great film. 5 stars
11/21/06 Jobe Nakcharoen Fantastic film! 5 stars
10/22/06 Theo Kirby What a powerfull film , Brilliant Child actors too 5 stars
10/17/06 Sanger R Overall good, especially Chris Newman; also impressed by the kid who played Gerard Peters 4 stars
8/22/06 Sophia Sanderson I think this film is awesome!! makes me feel really sad 5 stars
5/30/06 Terrific movie, and awful to think it was all true!! The Cath.Church has a lot to answer! 5 stars
7/30/05 karen jovana exelente pelicula 5 stars
6/05/05 seaside a jewel about a real cruel event 5 stars
12/07/04 Patrick Duncan 1 of the best-told and most heartfelt explorations on film ever of a tough subject. 5 stars
11/17/04 sunil arora i m ntersted in that type of movei 4 stars
11/11/04 tashyprincess fantastic film but very sad cos it really happened 5 stars
11/09/04 aleric sad, but true 2 stars
9/11/04 Atro Up Qu for boy-lovers: would you rather be the priest, or the teacher? Touch the boy, or TOUCH 4 stars
9/04/04 Gerard Carson Absoultley Brilliant , Amazing- and also a very good friend of John Travers 5 stars
8/19/04 Lisamarie Chris Newman wat can i say what a gr8 ass :p Chris babeeee well dun luv ur msn admirer ! 5 stars
8/03/04 grace very good 4 stars
7/30/04 JJ Bradis Really awesome movei! 5 stars
7/28/04 Mr. D Duck That boy is so sexy. He just melts my butter.....and that ass, dont get me started. 5 stars
7/28/04 Kelly T OMG,i loved this movie!!!i cried,and yes chris newman is soooo hot!! 5 stars
7/28/04 Mr. M. Mouse I LOVE CHRIS. CHRIS I LOVE YOU. CALL ME 086 4521783 XxX oh baby..... 5 stars
7/25/04 rebecca i think john travers is soo sexy!!! especially in real life!best movie ive saw!! 5 stars
6/10/04 rph excellent 5 stars
5/19/04 Marte Patrick Delaney, Chris Newman was brilliant in this movie, and my heart cried for him! 5 stars
4/19/04 Niamh Lynch Great film and OMG Chris Newman is incredibly hot 5 stars
4/14/04 Andrew Simpson (im Peters in the film) Brilliant :-) 5 stars
4/14/04 mm very moving 5 stars
4/14/04 Patrick Duncan Men have cried watching this film 5 stars
3/24/04 Frankie Newman Mr. Newman gave a realistic performance!! Along with the other actos.. go check this out ! 5 stars
3/22/04 Azz Chris Newman is amazing,I blame the parents 5 stars
3/08/04 Barry Newman If Chris Newman grows up half as good lookin as his big brother he'll be lucky 5 stars
3/02/04 charlotte i think this film is brill and liam is lush!! 5 stars
2/28/04 rebecca doherty absolutely brilliant.patrick delaney is brilliant 5 stars
2/26/04 rebecca doherty absolutely fantastic acting especially from young christopher newman 5 stars
2/26/04 Fiona Travers loved the film it was fabulous 5 stars
1/30/04 Patrick Duncan Incredible acting and tight direction make this high risk emotional film succeed totally. 5 stars
12/28/03 Brian O Hagan Dark and gloomy setting reflects the boys true horror 5 stars
12/08/03 woookash great film, great performance... 5 stars
11/19/03 TOM Very disturbing/Great acting. 4 stars
11/15/03 Tricia Flynn the extra is this movie were awesome, especially brother no. 4 5 stars
11/10/03 Charlotte Knight Tragic especially when liam died......i cried 5 stars
11/08/03 anne great performances (esp. young actors). 5 stars
11/01/03 matthias cliché too black and white, awful ending 1 stars
10/30/03 Sebastijan Best Film I've ever seen! 5 stars
10/27/03 Kimberly Stumpf A very moving and powerful performance. 5 stars
10/24/03 leo archer excellent 4 stars
10/23/03 paudie kelleher excellent performances from Aidan Quinn and Ian Glen 5 stars
10/23/03 yvonne execellent performance from quinn 4 stars
10/22/03 Daniel Amazing yet disturbing, best Irish acting in a while 5 stars
10/19/03 Mat great! 5 stars
10/08/03 Deborah Mc Laughlin Amazing, the child actors were superb! 5 stars
9/03/03 Angie Heart A deeply disturbing that is made all the more powerful because of its factual basis. 4 stars
7/26/03 treasa o riordan very depressing but it had to be very well john travers and chris newman act well ! 4 stars
7/12/03 VG Cliche, sentimental, balck and white dumbness. 2 stars
6/13/03 Patrick Duncan The film is outstanding, and (rarely known for any film) at this one men will cry. 5 stars
6/05/03 Joe Whalen Excellent film, although very disturbing - saw at SIFF 5 stars
3/19/03 Mary Very Powerful film - showing balanced view of that era. Well written. 5 stars
3/17/03 eliza doolittle extremley moving 4 stars
3/05/03 Bob Binski Fantastic 5 stars
2/27/03 Vera Buttimer Aidan Quinn is a superb actor, I was an extra in the film and I think it is going to be bri 5 stars
2/01/03 Mike Lyons Wonderful! Emotional and evocative. 5 stars
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