Why Did You Kill My Dad Review: Mad World

March 1, 2010 by  
Filed under - Home, Reviews

WHY DID YOU KILL MY DAD?: Monday 1st March, BBC 2, 9pm ALERT ME

In 2007, Phillip Hendy was brutally killed while he was paying for his newspapers at a local shop. His attacker had a history of violent offences and mental health issues.

Phillip’s son, filmmaker Julian Hendy, has been looking into what could have been done to prevent his father’s tragic death. The answer, it turns out, is quite a lot.

Rather than a solely personal account of what it was like to lose his father, Julian turns the film into a scathing review of the mental health services. Obviously the film approaches the subject from the victim’s families’ point of view and Julian speaks to several people who have been affected in the same way as him. Each family said the same thing: they had all been failed by the mental health service.

While the content is going to make for emotive viewing, the title is somewhat misleading. I was watching in anticipation of an exciting confrontation between the Julian and the killer but, unfortunately, no such encounter occurred.

If anyone’s been through a similiar situation as Julian then this might be painfully interesting for them, but if you don’t have a personal connection to the subject, then this might be harder to watch – for several reasons.

Ultimately, Julian’s investigation into the mental health services and the events surrounding his father’s death yields few answers. Yes, the subject matter is important and many will feel sympathy for the families involved in the film, but mostly it’s a series of unanswered questions and lots of frustration.