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ONE OF THEIR OWN BY ALLEN COLOMBO

Directed by Allen Colombo /Reviewed by Riya Saha

“Don’t talk to strangers” has been the rule for many parents for generations. But what if stranger kids come to befriend your kid? Shall they interact or not? With the concept of a Digital Kid being bullied by stranger kids, Director Allen Colombo has set a perfect example through his film One of Their Own. He has spent the last decade learning how to puppet digital humans and finally he achieved success. One of Their Own combines motion capture and live-action to tell the story of a digital boy who gets into trouble trying to fit in with the human kids. Shot on a walnut farm with six kids and a crew of three, the film was created using a mo cap pipeline developed in-house at Effie.

Bullying can exist in many forms: It can be physical (pushing, punching, or hitting); verbal (name-calling or threats); or psychological and emotional (spreading rumors or excluding someone from a conversation or activity).

And with the pervasive use of social media, inappropriate behavior between kids can occur outside of school hours via emails, text messages, and Facebook posts. These exchanges, known as cyber bullying, can be particularly hurtful and aggressive, and their harmful effects are often brought back into school the next day.

Bullying can be done by calling names “Hey Fatso” “Brown nose” “Toothpick legs” or done physical assault. Experiences like these may still linger in your memory when you were bitten by your school bully boy or the playground hero.  As an adult, you may look back and wonder what you did to bring on such unwanted attention and what you could have done to end it.

When your children come home upset because they were teased, you may feel as helpless now as you did then. Stand strong by their side and make them understand that they need to fight back. Do not just ignore their upset face. Also teach them not to take rides with unknown kids, just like the digital boy in the film did.

Some children tease because they enjoy watching their target become upset when his buttons are pushed. The more upset the victim becomes, the more the harasser is rewarded. 

Confidence is key. Whether they’re being bullied or not, if your child has confidence, they’ll be able to get through the bad times with grace.

If they have a group of mean kids picking on them — and them alone — on the playground, encourage them to find a new friend to stick by on their time outside of the classroom.

Each aspect of the film was a treat to the eyes. Most importantly the digital kid that the director has created there is strong evidence for the universal facial expressions of seven emotions – anger, contempt, disgust, fear, joy, sadness, and surprise. The kid is just like a normal kid he smiles, cries, he becomes sad.

Surely the movie has an encouraging concept for the independent film industry. A movie worth watching!

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