There have been a number of films over the years where children play the protagonists. Some of the most memorable are those which show youngsters working as a group or in teams to reach an end goal with violence at the heart. I DECLARE WAR is a fun, playful film which explores the imaginations of young boys as well as friendships and trust. Whilst they play an innocent game of ‘Capture the Flag’ it soon takes a more serious tone and the quest for victory pushes the boundaries of companionship, giving the would-be warriors a glimpse of the darker side of human nature.
To celebrate the release of I DECLARE WAR, in cinemas Friday 6th June, we take a look at some of the most iconic and memorable child adventure films to date.
The Goonies (1985)
Arguably one of the most commonly known child-adventure films, The Goonies is based on a Steven Spielberg short story. A group of kids search for buried treasure in a subterranean cavern while facing deadly traps set by pirates, challenging their friendship and their determination. Similarly to I Declare War, the film explores themes of companionship and trust.
Stand By Me (1986)
Nominated for two Golden Globes, this 1986 coming of age classic follows the story of four new friends hiking across the countryside to find the body of a missing boy. Their growing unity and determination to reach the common goal are challenged by a series of adventures and a final conflict against young bullies who want to take away the body. The film captures the relationship between young boys in transition to adolescence.
Lord of the Flies (1963)
Peter Brooks’ film adaptation of William Golding’s novel Lord of the Flies, tells the story of a group of shipwrecked boys who face the cruel reality of life on a desert island. Left to fend for themselves, the young boys attempt to take on the responsibilities of adults, inevitably causing a rift between them. The differences between the groups soon become clear, showing the divide between civilisation and savagery.
The War (1996)
War veteran Stephen Simmonds, played by Kevin Costner, has to deal with life after the Vietnam War, but conflict is never too far away. His children Stu and Lydia have to fight to keep their tree house that has been taken over by a group of neighbourhood bullies, but this conflict is not make-believe and ends with fatal consequences.
Hunger Games (2012)
Based on Suzanne Collins’ science fiction novel starring Jennifer Lawrence, this blockbuster tells the story of teenagers living in a post-apocalyptic world. Each year 12 boys and girls are randomly selected to compete in a televised battle to the death. Unlike Hunger Games, the realistic portrayal of conflict in I Declare War remains a product of children’s imagination, but death is central to both.
I DECLARE WAR will be released in cinemas tomorrow, 6 June 2014. You can read our review here and we’ll leave you with the trailer below: