The film takes place in a small provincial town in Jutland, Denmark. Rosa, a 13-year-old, lives here, and despite the fact that she wears a prosthetic leg, she is very vivacious. Here she experiences the up and down sides of provincial life. Rosa has many irons in the fire. She delivers groceries for the local grocer Jorgensen to his customers who don’t frequent the discount supermarkets. She visits the grocer’s son Knud who suffers from Down’s syndrome. She also takes care of other eccentrics in the town, such as the old nutter Rimkjaer, whose best friend is Verner, the hamster, and she delivers groceries to a posh old lady named Ellen who seems to have a drinking problem. Rosa loves to sing and is in the school choir which is preparing for a Christmas celebration. Rosa lives with her father, the artist Karsten. They have been on their own for some time, since Rosa’s mother is an opera singer who travels the world.
Yet everything is not perfect. Rosa’s energetic activities hide her insecurity about her leg. She feels that in comparison to her friends she must make an extra effort to be accepted. And that’s why she often falls out with others. She gets easily upset and angry. She has a crush on Mads, the most popular boy in the class, and this gives her problems with prettiest girl in the class, Henriette. Rosa tries to show off by climbing a tall tree to rescue a kitten.
She is determined that she will be the head of the Christmas procession, not Henriette. She also has an unrealistic dream of her mother, who’s home on a short visit, coming to the school too hear the choir rehearse – and of course this doesn’t happen. When she visits the elderly, she often scolds them and gives them good advice. It all comes to a head at the school prom when Henriette cuts in on Rosa and Mads’ dance, and Rosa runs home in anger and despair and locks herself in the shed. But help comes from an unexpected place: Henriette follows Rosa and wants to talk to her, and the two girls bond: a true friendship has been made.
Fleas Bark Too – Don’t They was directed by Stellan Ollsson and won the Golden Slipper, Zlin, and the Adult Jury Award, Chicago.