Thirteen-year-old Kira and his friends regularly torment their classmate, Itsuki, but one day Kira takes things too far—shooting an arrow from a makeshift crossbow into Itsuki’s throat. As Itsuki bleeds out, Kira and his friends flee the scene, but when Kira is interviewed by police, he confesses. As the object of rabid social media attention—even being doxxed online—Kira is found “not guilty” by juvenile court to everyone’s dismay. But the constant attention on Kira and his family never relents as cries for justice escalate into xenophobic hate, social media harassment, and more. A raw and unsettling account of teen bullying and delinquency, Forgiven Children takes inspiration from real-life juvenile cases in Japan, presenting an unfiltered view on the Japanese juvenile system, the ruthless cycle perpetrated by bullying, and conflicting questions of ethics and morality.
Streaming in North America from December 3-23 as part of Flash Forward: Debut Works and Recent Films by Notable Japanese Directors