JackWatchMovies’s review published on Letterboxd:
Jojo Rabbit is an amazing movie. Taika Waititi has done an excellent job here, crafting a movie full of humor, heart, and emotion. It tells a very bizzare story, for sure, but it pays off incredibly well. The writing here is simply brilliant, the movie succeeds as not only a great satire, but also as an incredibly powerful coming-of-age story, just one set in Nazi Germany and with Hitler as an imaginary friend. It is a perfect mix of both comedy and drama, the movie is not only consistently hilarious throughout, but also features some of the most emotionally powerful and devastating scenes of the whole year. (trust me, this movie gets really fucking sad) The tonal shifts never feel out of place, they all come naturally and make sense. The humor is very solid, there’s a lot of great physical humor here, as well as some truly hilarious dialogue throughout that definitely had me laughing many times. All of the dialogue fits perfectly with this story, it can get pretty odd in spots, but that’s definitely the point, it helps add to the sense of humor and satire this movie had going for it. And when it gets emotional, the dialogue shifts over in tone very well. And overall, this is just a really well-told and brilliant story that kept my attention and had me feeling all sorts of emotions. The movie looks great too, it’s very well-shot and there’s some very nice visual humor in there too that helps give the cinematography a nice flair. Waititi’s direction is fantastic, he is able to visually tell this story very well, he really makes the script come to life on sceeen, and he gets some top-grade performances out of the entire cast. Roman Griffin Davis gives by far the best child perfoamnce of the year, he is simply spectacular here, and it’s his first acting role too, which is even more impressive. He gives the character of Jojo so many dimensions and a lot of depth, and he really sells some of the more emotional scenes. Thomasin McKenzie is just as fantastic too, and is able to bring so much to this character, she had a tough role to pull off, but she did it flawlessly. This is also the best acting I’ve ever seen Scarlett Johansson yet, she plays the mother of Jojo, and she is terrific, playing this very loving, funny, and sweet character to perfection. She did a fantastic job, and I fully expect her to get nominated for both this role and her upcoming role in Marriage Story. Everyone else is great too, Sam Rockwell is great as usual, Stephen Merchant’s brief appearance is both funny and tense at the same time, and Taika Waititi himself does a really job of playing this cartoonish and ridiculous imaginary version of Hitler, everytine he shows up the movie just gets even funnier. I must also give a shout out Archie Yates as Jojo’s friend, who is probably the funniest part of the entire movie, everything he says is comedy gold. Michael Giacchino’s score is as amazing as you would expect, and the song choices are fantastic as well. (I love the way David Bowie’s Heroes is used in particular) And the way it ended, absolute brilliance, the perfect way to finish the film. So, overall, I thought this was a fantastic movie, and it ended up actually surpassing my already high expectations. It had so much more to offer than I was expecting, and that’s a very good thing. I totally loved this movie.
And it also definitely wins the award for the best use of the one permitted “fuck” in a PG-13 movie by far.