|The girl sheds a tear|
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Girl is a 2001 music video brickfilm by Ben Brenninkmeyer. It follows the story of a girl with inattentive, substance-abusing parents and is set to the song "The Little Girl" by John Michael Montgomery. At its time of release, it was reported on by a number of different news outlets and was considered a controversial brickfilm for its depictions of drug use, suicide, and coarse language.
A little girl's parents have no interest in religion and the father is an alcoholic while the mother is addicted to cocaine. They show no love to the girl, who is left watching the TV alone while her parents are absent. The parents drunkenly fight every night, hurling insults at each other, while the girl hides behind their couch.
The fighting continuously gets worse and, one night, the father produces a gun in a drunken rage and shoots the mother and then himself. The girl is rescued by social workers and brought to foster parents, who show her love and introduce her to religion. On her first day of Sunday school, the girl spots a picture of Jesus on the cross and remarks that she does not know who he is but knows that he got off the cross, as she recognises him as having been present behind the couch comforting her on the night of her parents' deaths.
Upon submission to Brickfilms.com, Girl was described in a site review as "admittedly a bit of Christian propaganda", but it was noted that it "may be the most serious film we have had on Brickfilms to date" and was recommended to watch.The serious subject matter seen in the film such as cocaine use, domestic violence, murder and suicide, regardless of it all being depicted in a negative light, drew criticism from those who felt that adult content should not be depicted in a film made with LEGO, which would be appealing to children. The film was picked up on by news media and was generally reported on alongside the Rick & Steve series, which was receiving negative attention from The LEGO Group at the time. Girl was featured in a Danish newspaper article and on Danish TV news, who focused on the controversial shots without providing context and added their own sound effects. When asked, The LEGO Group talked of pursuing legal action against the film, but they did not decide to follow through, unlike what happened to Rick & Steve.
The New York Times covered the film in a more positive light and looked forward to more serious films created with LEGO. Jason Rowoldt, founder of Brickfilms.com, responded to the controversies by defending directors' right to produce whatever film they desired as long as they did not breach The LEGO Group's copyright and viewed Girl as taking brickfilming in a positive direction, wishing to see more films tackling similarly serious subject matter.