Boasting a surprisingly natural cast of amateur actors and directed by radical stage director Peter Brook ("Marat/Sade"), this lowbudget British effort impressively captures much of the novel's back-to-nature symbolism that I found so powerful and fascinating.
The young masters representing good and evil, James Aubrey ("Ralph") and Tom Chapin ("Jack"), effectively portray the resolute leaders of the two disparate tribes, while butterball Hugh Edwards as the bespectacled, philosophical "Piggy" and towheaded Tom Gaman as the quietly sensitive "Simon" are touching as two of the weaker followers who become likely targets of the surrounding chaos and burgeoning brutality.
What kid did not fantasize, at one time or another, being left alone, completely unsupervised, for a long, long, LONG period of time?
To be allowed to say or do whatever he pleased, whenever he pleased.
To eat anything he wanted, to go to bed late, to not go to school, to act or behave as he pleased without reproach. Usually those kind of thoughts permeated our little minds right after a heavy-duty punishment.
In 1990's "Home Alone," we saw a broad, comical take on this fantasy.
With 1963's "Lord of the Flies," we get to experience the flip side.
"Lord of the Flies" was required reading in junior high school.William Golding's dark, sobering allegory, set during wartime London, tells the story of a large group of young schoolboys airlifted out of England who are left to their own devices after a plane crash leaves them marooned on an uninhabited isle with no surviving adults.As the boys struggle to adapt to their crude but strangely exotic "Robinson Crusoe" existence, the troop begins to splinter into two opposing sects after failing to come to terms on an autonomous code of ethics.Most of the boys decide to revel in their unsupervised freedom, reverting to primitive, animal-like behavior while resorting to barbaric acts and ritualistic practices.A conch shell becomes the embodiment of power; a boar's head a symbol of lordly conquest.On the other side, a minority group try to repel the tempting force of evil by forming a more civilized commune.