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Responsible Child (2019)

Factual drama, based on true cases in the UK, following Ray, a 12-year-old boy, and his experience of the UK legal system that puts him on trial for murder.

Director:

Nick Holt

Writer:

Sean Buckley
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Billy Barratt ... Ray
James Tarpey James Tarpey ... Nathan
Tom Burke ... William Ramsden
Neal Barry ... Kevin - Appropriate Adult
Tina Harris ... Sergeant Lucas
Owen McDonnell ... Pete
Michelle Fairley ... Kerry
Debbie Honeywood ... Veronica
Shaun Dingwall ... Scott
Kirsten Wright Kirsten Wright ... Serena
Zachary Barnfield Zachary Barnfield ... Christie
Angela Wynter Angela Wynter ... Grace
Matthew Aubrey Matthew Aubrey ... Gary
Zita Sattar ... Sam Delaney
Stephen Boxer ... Judge Walden
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Storyline

Factual drama, based on true cases in the UK, following Ray, a 12-year-old boy, and his experience of the UK legal system that puts him on trial for murder.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Drama

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Details

Country:

UK

Language:

English

Release Date:

16 December 2019 (UK) See more »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Stereo

Color:

Color
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Trivia

Billy Barratt is the grandson of Shakin' Stevens (Michael Barratt). See more »

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User Reviews

 
Responsible Child
17 December 2019 | by Prismark10See all my reviews

This docudrama is certainly inspired by dramas made by Ken Loach for the BBC back in the 1960s.

Whereas Loach even now continues to look at the flawed social welfare system. Director Nick Holt places the spotlight in Britain's justice system and how it deals with child offenders.

In England and Wales, children as young as 10 can be tried for murder and treated as if they were adults in an adult court. It is one of the lowest ages of criminal responsibility and has attracted criticism from the United Nations for breaching the Rights of a child.

Based on true events. 12 year old Ray (Billy Barratt) along with his older brother, Nathan who is 23 years of age are accused of murdering their stepfather in a frenzied knife attack.

The stepfather was a violent brute. The viewer see the events that led to killing as well as the trial.

The film is a troubling polemic. Ray has been let down by social workers as well as his mother. The judge at the trial has lifted reporting restrictions. The judge does not seem sympathetic that one of the accused is a young child. The prosecuting barrister takes little heed of the age of the person he is cross examining. It might not be common or required but I have actually seen warnings given to lawyers in the civil courts when they cross examine children and told to be careful of their conduct.

Ray is sensitively portrayed by 12 year old Billy Barratt. Holt wants to highlight the plight of children accused of serious crimes. I guess some older viewers might be less sympathetic to the issues raised. They would be aware of the Jamie Bulger murder in the early 1990s by two young children.


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