Sunday, June 7, 2015

Boyhood - Movie Review

Boyhood' has been shot over 12 years - with the same cast - as the actors (and the rest of the crew) grew biologically, emotionally and whatever other ways people grow. The boy whose 'hood' the movie is about, is Mason (Eller Coltrane), and we see him growing up before our very eyes, from six years or so till eighteen when he goes to college (and goes off on a pot-smoking trek on day one). That means that the entire cast had to remain safe and alive and hopefully in one piece and to their credit, they did. It was  interesting to see the way the people changed in appearances which also says something about their personalities. Like the way Mason turns deeper and quieter.

Coltrane and his sibling (Lorelei Linklater, who is director Richard Linklater's daughter) ) are brought up by a single mother who has a penchant for picking up all the wrong types as husband material and subsequently keeps dumping them. The boy's biological father is Ethan Hawke - an aspiring musician who has not had a real job ever - but plenty of ideas about life. He peps up the kids life in their weekly meetings, Marriages, jobs, alcoholics, choices and before you know it, after about 3 hours, 12 years have gone and by and many lives have changed significantly including the audiences surely. Somehow, by keeping the same cast, Richard Linklater makes them part of our lives - its like seeing pictures and videos of those relatives and friends who are growing up with you. They are real and alive and so will these characters.

The changes in the youngsters lives are dramatic over the eighteen years, while the changes in the older peoples lives are more or less stagnant. Its almost as if the older people have found the kind of issues to grapple with for the rest of their lives and are grappling with them. What also strikes you is the kind of information that children access consciously and unconsciously and the impressions they form through their childhood about parents, freedom, life. Very, very long but very, very interesting. Epic is certainly the word.


Hmmm said...

Ah glad you wrote about it. Made me go back and read what I wrote about it months ago. If you care to read it's here:

Harimohan said...

Finally got to read your excellent review Hmmm. Somehow was not able to open the link all this while. You're right, its about the small things (which are the big things really). Linklater has a fine eye for life, people and that's what makes his movies interesting. You see movies like this and realise that you don't need a bigger drama than an ordinary life, if you know how to look at ordinariness.