The film shows a group of bullies and their relationship with their victims, and how the group works during different circumstances. The movie is based on actual events in Gothenburg, where kids used a scheme wherein they accused their targets of having stolen mobile phones. Through coercion and psychological violence they then make the victims to hand over the cell phone to get out of the uncomfortable situation that arises. During the movie, the power relationship between the groups, the bullies and the victims, often changes and the bullies ask their victims for help, which they also get, as the victims play along in the social setup that has been created. The interactions with adults that the groups have are unsettling. The adults often refuse to interfere, perhaps due to insecurity about where the line goes, or whether they are assumed to interfere. Some adults also seem to downplay what is happening in front of them, almost acting as if children cannot abuse other children, and what they witness is child's play. Ultimately, the adults and the children seem to be from different worlds altogether, worlds that are not meant to meet. The end has several interesting twists. One of them is when, several months later, one parent of the robbed children finds one of the perpetrators, and decides to confront him. This is done in a similar bully-like way as the bullies were using in the first place. During the movie I felt very angry and upset, and I was picturing several ways I would deal with the bullies. But this last scene shows the futility of acting in such short-sighted ways; the reasons for acting like bullies are reinforced as he views himself even more of an outsider, and the abusive parents are later confronted by onlookers. Trying to explain their frustration and the situation to the confronting onlookers, I feel as if the parents are not only talking for themselves, but also for my own viewpoints. The absurdity of using bullying to stop bullying is exposed, and I laugh at my own simple and reductionist reactions I had just a few minutes ago. This was an great movie, one of the best, most developed depictions of human behavior, domination and submission in social interaction. If I ever become a parent, I would definitely show this movie to my children as they are about to enter school, to discuss how to deal with bullies and to talk about how bullying arises.
An astute observation based on real cases of bullying. In central Gothenburg, Sweden, a group of boys, aged 12-14, robbed other children on about 40 occasions between 2006 and 2008. The ...
September 11, 2020