The ProdigalsLondon Grid for Learning

The Prodigals (2007), is a compelling and emotive film drama about three young people and their friends, who learn hard lessons about life choices and consequences of leaving home in an unplanned way, as they search for independence and move towards adulthood. Film and music mediums are used as an authentic and effective medium to engage and capture the attention, hearts and minds of young people.

The film explores the links between family conflict and young people's desire for greater independence, freedom and choice. It focuses on the primary characters, Ryan, Kelly and Leon's life choices, decision-making and consequences. The subliminal qualities of the film and soundtracks, and the subtlety of the multitude of youth-related issues and core messages, are often not registered by the viewer and listener without external prompts. As they watch and immerse themselves in the film's narrative and get hooked in the engaging story line, combined with the sequencing of the film clips, this will provide a compelling audio-visual learning experience. The film's key messages will enable young person to explore and identify the realities of their current situation in a very real and dramatic way. Practitioners working with young people and parents will be better equipped to help them explore and be more aware of their current construction of their problems and, if necessary, help them find alternative and more positive ways of making sense of and dealing with the problems that are causing difficulties in their lives.

You have watched the film, now share your thoughts. From what you have seen and heard:

  • Which character stands out for you the most and why?
  • What do you think about the character Ryan?
  • What do you think about the character Kelly?
  • What do you think about the character Leon?
  • What do you think about the character Marlon?
  • What do you think about the character Yaz?
  • What do think about the film character Michael?
  • What do think about Kelly's mum?
  • What do think about Leon's mum?
  • What were the key messages from the film?
  • What surprised you and why?
  • What troubled you and why?
  • What inspired you and why?

Disclosures: Teachers and practitioners are reminded to begin all lessons by underlining that the session is not a safe place or confidential space to share personal issues and young people should consider this prior to disclosing information. Teachers are supported in this by references to the 'Engagement for Learning' activities.