Recaps & Reviews

Jojo Rabbit Is A Quirky, Touching Film

When Jojo Rabbit won Tiff’s People’s Choice Award last year, people who hadn’t seen it started asking questions about it. Then when it started receiving nominations for Golden Globes, Oscars and other awards even more people stood up and took notice. Now the quirky, heart warming film is available on digital and bluray, and it’s here it should start to really shine.

Jojo Rabbit follows the story of a 10 year old boy named Jojo (Roman Griffin Davis) who lives inside Nazi Germany with dreams of fighting for his idol Adolf Hitler. So enthralled with the idea Jojo even imagines Hitler is his friend, and from time to time he talks to his imaginary friend seeking advice. As enthusiastic as Jojo is for being a soldier though, he’s not quite sure he has the stomach for it, and when he finds out that his mother is hiding a Jewish girl in his home he starts to question his beliefs even further. 

Jojo Rabbit is hard to classify. Is it funny? Yes. Is it heartwarming and touching? Most definitely. Is it dramatic? Without a doubt. The film toys with your emotions from start to finish, so much so that at times you are unsure if it is alright to laugh or if you should be shocked instead. The film is full of quirky characters that make the film a delight to watch, from Jojo himself, to his teacher Captain Klenzendorf (Sam Rockwell), the Jewish girl Elsa (Thomasin McKenzie) hiding in his home, his mother Rosie (Scarlett Johansson) and even Hitler (played by director Taika Waititi). To call the film unique might just be a bit of an understatement, but let’s just say that winning the Oscar for Best Adapted Screenplay was well justified. What the film does best is give you a glimpse of a childhood defined by a war, and the evil men who run the war. Unlike a lot of films, you really do get to see things from a child’s perspective. Innocent, confusing and above all a time of learning and growing.

The bluray of Jojo Rabbit has the typical special features, from outtakes and deleted scenes, to a behind the scenes making of documentary. In this case though it’s the director’s commentary that really shines. Taika Waititi has a unique approach to film-making, and his commentary is no different. He doesn’t actually spend a lot of time talking about how he made the film, but instead gives a few insights on certain scenes and keeps the listener entertained. There aren’t a lot of films that have commentaries that are fun to listen to, but this is one of them, especially when Waititi decides to call some of the actors over the phone and talk to them during it. 

There really aren’t enough adjectives to properly describe Jojo Rabbit. It’s one of those films you really just need to discover by yourself, by sitting down and watching it, and now that it’s available to watch at home you really should do just that. 

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