My Life as a Dog
Time Out saysThis charming, bitter-sweet evocation of childhood is something of a minor gem. Set in the Sweden of the 1950s, it describes the 400 blows suffered by a resourceful, twitchy and energetic 12-year-old boy who is farmed out to country relatives when his antics and demands for attention prove too much for his ailing mother. Hallström nurtures from his young star (Glanzelius) a performance of remarkable range and maturity, presenting a poignant picture of youthful tenacity struggling to come to terms with disappointments and events that may be beyond his comprehension, but which he manages to negotiate with his quirky, open-eyed optimism intact. Witty, touching and perceptive as he contrasts the rural village and its strange but generous-hearted eccentrics with the harsher realities of the city, Hallström makes it a seamless mix of tragedy and humour.