Written by: Michael Den Boer on October 7th, 2015
Release Date: Ireland, 2015
Production Company: Deep Web Films
Approximate running time: 102 minutes
Aspect Ratio: 2.35:1 Aspect Ratio
Director: Stephen Gaffney
Writer: Stephen Gaffney
Cinematographer: Stephen Gaffney
Composer: Damien Walsh
Cast: Ciaran McCabe, Kieran O’Reilly, James Ward, Aislinn Ní Uallacháin, George Bracebridge, Aaron Blake, Saoirse Doyle, Chelsea O’Connor
Synopsis: A troubled youth’s life steadily spirals out of control.
At the heart of this film is story about a young man named Karl and how bullies at school contribute to his growing depression. His situation becomes further complicated when a deviant teacher takes advantage of Karl’s vulnerability. And while this is going on there are two other key relationships that play a pivotal role in Karl’s evolution. Also when it comes to these two women they are like night and day. The first of these two women is named Ruby and she meet Karl online. With the entirety of the relationship takes place online, while the other women named Christina spends time with him in the real world. Needless to say Ruby has ulterior motives for speaking to Karl, while Christina genuinely likes him for who is? With that being said, Karl’s inability to let go of Ruby once he has established a strong bond with Christina leads to the loss of the only positive thing in his life.
Content wise, Bully is a dark film that only gets bleaker as its narrative progresses. And the tone of film extends to the characters which populate this film. With the majority of them exhibiting traits which make it hard to sympathize for them. Also this lack of sympathy extends to the film’s protagonist whose character comes full circle by the end of the film. Making the transition for the victim to the victimizer.
In regards to subject matter explored in this film, when it comes to bullying and how the internet has expanded the reach of those looking to cause others harm. These are two areas where this film excels the most. Another area where this film scores high marks are the strong performances from its cast, especially Ciaran McCabe in the role of Karl, the protagonist of this film.
More information about this film can be found here.