Follow TV Tropes


Film / Paw

Go To

Paw is a 1959 film from Denmark directed by Astrid Henning-Jensen. It is also known as Boy of Two Worlds.

A boy of perhaps eight who is called "Paw" (yes, that's his name) arrives in Denmark from the West Indies. It seems that he's the child of a Danish man and a West Indian mother. His mother died in childbirth and his father just recently died, leaving the boy an orphan. So that's why Paw has arrived in Denmark on a boat to live with his only relative, his father's sister.

Paw's introduction to school goes about as well as might be expected for a dark-skinned Caribbean boy in Denmark, as he is relentlessly bullied by the racist boys in class. Then his aunt dies, and Paw faces the prospect of life in an orphanage. He's saved from that when local fisherman Anders, who's taken a shine to the boy, steps up and offers to be Paw's guardian, but more difficulties lie ahead.



  • Banister Slide: The landowner's high-spirited teenage daughter does this on the stairs of their mansion.
  • Blade-of-Grass Cut: Many closeups of the flora and fauna of Denmark—foxes, butterflies, a beetle crawling on a leaf.
  • Death by Childbirth: The reason for the Missing Mom and half of the reason why Paw is now an orphan.
  • Disturbed Doves: A flock of birds flies off from the wetlands at the sound of a gunshot.
  • The Film of the Book: Adapted from a 1918 Danish children's novel by Torry Gelsted.
  • Gang of Bullies: The creeps from Paw's class, who bully him whenever they see him outside of school, usually in groups of at least four to Paw's one.
  • Heartwarming Orphan: Poor little Paw, persecuted by racist bullies.
  • Inspirationally Disadvantaged: While all the evil little boys in class bully Paw nonstop, one little girl sticks up for him. That little girl also has some sort of handicap (a club foot?) that causes her to walk with a distinctively uneven gait.
  • Advertisement:
  • Kids Are Cruel: They're racist bullies. They call Paw "ape boy" and "n***r."
  • Match Cut: From Anders taking aim at a deer with his rifle, to a little tin outline of a deer, which a boy shoots at with a BB rifle at a carnival shooting game.
  • Off-into-the-Distance Ending: Ends with Anders and Paw walking away, the squire having relented and agreed to let Paw come back home.
  • Off the Grid: After his second escape from the orphanage, Paw makes his way to an island in the middle of the lake and lives there for a while, buidling himself a hut, making fire, crafting a bow and arrow and also rigging a spear to catch fish.
  • The Plot Reaper: Paw's Aunt Bo has to die to move the story along.
  • Roguish Poacher: Anders, who supplements his life as a fisherman by poaching the landowner's deer. Anders and Paw first bond when Paw, who finds Anders' gun in the woods, fires it a couple of times to distract the landowner from his suspicion that Anders is the poacher.

How well does it match the trope?

Example of:


Media sources: