I'm gonna have to agree with Lockbite analysis here. Part of it stems out of a socio/political disagreement on what's healthy for kids in the first place (isn't it funny that conservatives tend to endorse obeying authority yet want to limit the ability of government to become one, while liberals tend to endorse resisting authority, yet want to give the government more power to be one over them? I just realized that while thinking out this post. And then you have the eventual fear- abuse of power/authority becoming tyranny, and again, the way each side thinks they'll avoid it (recognition based on morality/resist it all just in case) is kind of opposite to their treatment of free speech (protect it all just in case/oppose or accept it based on morality)? It's funny the more interactions here make me think through political dichotomies, the more I see each political side applying absolutely opposite principles to two different things in their belief systems...)
...And that's a whole lotta words without getting to All monsters Attack.
...So a part of it is a disagreement on the point of acting out against authority being a positive benefit; but even outside of that, look at what the act contextually represents- the same behavior that Ichiro was bullied for refusing earlier. He has become their leader, yes- and he is leading them in exactly what he was taking a principled stand against earlier
. (Caused by a different methodology, but with the intent of bringing about the same result). He has become exactly like what was hateful, was portrayed as negative, just because he's been accepted as one of them.
Add to that, of course, the analysis from my own review about the consequences and psychological/situational state of each family member by the film's end (father in debt and trying to escape the city, now forced deeper into the hole financially to make up for his son's misdeeds as he promises to make restitution for the vandalism, with the implication that this may become the new status quo; mother horribly traumatized and living in paralyzing fear for her son's safety and unable to do anything about it except silently try to cope, alone; and Ichiro capitulating to join the system of anarchy and mischief, not only representing a moral compromise, but also a situational deterioration and potential to cause even greater grief and stress for his already-overburdened parents).
At best, I can be generous and call this a major critique of inner-city life of the era; a way of saying 'This is hopeless, it traps families and corrupts and destroys them, it leaves its mark on everyone and is hopeless and there's no way out; this is no way to live.' Which would be a pretty subversive criticism to encode into a kid's film, but at least it would be a redeeming feature. As it is, I think all these things are an unintentional side-effect of poorly-thought-out writing, much like the tonally-jarring 'heroic WMDs' of the Millennium era. (Although I do suspect some of the visual/aural ugliness LockBite mentions is
an intended critique of big-city life; the lyric in the opening song does talk about how "Life is hard for us also," so I think there's a definite element of 'life in the city kinda sucks'- just not to a degree of accounting for the unintentional despair and existential hopelessness layered onto the family's situation by the ending).
But I really don't think this is tying into knots, or even reaching- just a reading of what's presented onscreen. Perhaps one from a slightly-different viewpoint of child psychology, but not one that in any way requires reading into more than what's presented onscreen.