UK & Ireland & Ireland
Dir: Neasa Ní Chianáin & Declan McGrath
YOUNG PLATO charts the dream of Elvis-loving school headmaster Kevin McArevey – a maverick who is determined to change the fortunes of an inner-city community plagued by urban decay, sectarian aggression, poverty and drugs. The all-boys primary school in post-conflict Belfast, Northern Ireland, becomes a hot house for thinking and questioning, as the headmaster encourages the children to see beyond the boundaries and limitations of their community, and sends his young wards home each day armed with the wisdom of the ancient Greek philosophers. The boys challenge their school-friends, parents and neighbors to find alternatives to violence and prejudice, and to challenge the mythologies of war. YOUNG PLATO is full of humour and shines a positive light on contemporary Northern Ireland, offering a model for building a culture of peace in these troubling times.
“An inspirational, moving and ultimately uplifting film telling the unlikely story of a compassionate headmaster determined to change fortunes on an inner-city all-boys primary school and who turns to the wisdom of the ancient Greek philosophers, Young Plato is a breezy and powerful documentary that tackles big issues with a gentle touch as young minds learn to embrace challenging ideas.”
Film Review Daily
“Neasa Ní Chaináin and Declan McGrath’s outstanding documentary reveals the positive impact of a Belfast headmaster with an approach all his own.”
“… a stark reminder of the impact of generational violence. The lasting legacy of those dark times has been imprinted on those who witnessed them and their offspring. Young Plato is a sobering and emotive film about someone desperate to help make a change.”