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Before we start… Commentary on the film (by Rob Munday).

Praised by revered director Danny Boyle, Aaron Dunleavy and Joseph Ollman’s
compelling short Throw Me to the Dogs tells the story of an awkward boy
struggling to adapt to teenage life in a hardy British town. A gritty and intense
watch, this 12-minute short does exactly what British social realism should and
puts ‘the experiences of real Britons on the screen’.

“The film was entirely improvised, none of the cast had to learn lines and we did
not allow them to see the script”
Shot with a cast of non-professional actors, recruited from the streets around
where the short was filmed, there’s a rawness and believability in pair’s
filmmaking that makes Throw Me to the Dogs a powerful and memorable watch.
Speaking to a local newspaper in the UK, one-half of the directorial duo, Aaron
Dunleavy, explained a little more about their production:

“We shot Throw Me to the Dogs for a week in the February half-term last year.
We had a completely local cast and a shoestring budget of just £900…As the film
was entirely improvised, none of the cast had to learn lines and we did not allow
them to see the script…The film is inspired by my childhood growing up in
Blackburn, filmed around the part-demolished terraced streets of Griffin where
my family still lives. It was great to be able to make a film so close to my heart”.

Echoing the work of Lynne Ramsay and Andrea Arnold, who also started their
career in short film, Throw Me to the Dogs feels not only like a riveting piece of
storytelling but also an insightful glimpse into British life not often captured
outside of sensationalist television documentaries. A piece of fiction at heart, the
real-life inspiration, raw performances and unscripted approach of Dunleavy and
Ollman’s short makes it feel like an authentic, plausible slice of adolescent life.
Watch the short film, preferably taking notes, and then please answer
the questions orally. For each question an argumentation and
supporting examples should be given, following therefore a structure.

(1) Is the father a bad person? Is he just a bad father or does not really know
how to take care of a child? Do you think it is true that the father on this
short film does not really love his son?
(2) Is it England a more supportive country for those who cannot afford a
living? Do you think those kind of “ghetto” neighborhoods do exist in
Spain? Is it easier to find bullying within the lowest social classes?
(3) Is sport a way of preventing the rise of gangs and crime amongst the
(4) Is it the leader of the gang a bad person?
(5) How could bullying affect to those who had been bullied? Think about
what happens in this short film? Do you approve the behavior of the main
character or is it a sign that he is mentally unstable?

Go to pages 62 and 63 of the book and aiding yourself with the

example write an essay about how bullying should be treated and
fought against, specially within the lowest social classes and the