Jojo Rabbit

Jojo Rabbit ★★★★

Waititi's film is such a delicate tightrope walk that it is amazing that it was made. The film's heart is fully in the right place and about tastelessness can be discarded. It is a beautiful premise and the world needs more stories about compassion and understanding right now. As much as I enjoyed the movie it doesn't quite have the impact I was hoping for.
Waititi seems to have borrowed quite a bit from Wes Anderson, which this film resembles greatly. The difference is that Waititi has more heart and joy than Anderson and it really buoys the style. Like Anderson, he knows how to use framing and how to create a mood using music and tableau. His casting choices also feel very similar with well regarded actors giving slightly off-kilter performances that add color.
The two young leads are fabulous, never becoming cloying or cute. As these two have to carry all the emotional weight it is all the more impressive. Johansson proves to be the all star here giving a rich and funny performance that is both heart warming and heart breaking.
As a whole the film failed to fully engage me in the way I think Waititi was hoping. Perhaps it is too long or taken as a whole it loses its impact. All I know is that when I was seeing the preview in theaters I was moved to tears and completely got it fully. As a full film experience it lost some of that for me. I admire Waititi a lot and I hope he keeps taking chances like this.

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