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Monday, 20 July 2009

Aaron Lampert "Dillon's Story" (2007)













I referred to Dillon's Story last week. Aaron Lampert features a young boy, Dillon, who provides his own account of a life starved of both love and food, who eventually finds a form of security though, as it is clear at the close, still has profound problems. The short was the first of five made as part of The Wrong Trainers, a CBBC Newsround Special. It gained, amongst other major awards, the Children's BAFTA Award 2007 (Factual category). The animation is nothing less than assured, the narration powerful. The boy's mother throws her kids periodic sweets instead of food and forces all three to sleep on a urine soaked bare mattress. Dillon steals, joins in anti-social antics of older children in order to survive, suffers the derision of other children because he smells, sits on top of a waste bin because, raised up, he feels safe, and loves sweets more than is good for him. Dillon's idea of a happy childhood is a mother who will give him a kiss before he goes to sleep. Aaran's animation is professional, broadly literal but imaginative with it: the boy is dwarfed by a huge box of chocolates, we see his hand dip into a purse from inside, his face is seen peering from the wrong side of the letter box, he sits alone by a cracked piggy bank as the young narrator informs us that he still steals. The move from animation to live footage at the close has the young boy crunching up sweet papers. A marvellous documentary really. Disturbing and uplifting both, because now there is hope for the young fellow. Aaron is another of the talented bunch over at Trunk Animation.

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