Jonathan White’s review published on Letterboxd:
When I first heard about the premise of Taika Waititi’s latest at TIFF last year, the first thing I thought that the idea was as ill conceived as Springtime for Hitler.
Well, I was partially right. Unlike Springtime, Jojo Rabbit is trying to be funny … and this it succeeds act some of the time, while others it seems like it’s trying a bit too hard, and that uncomfortable feeling creeps back again.
For me, I think it worked best where the comedy wasn’t so forthright. An example was Stephen Merchant’s ‘heil’ scene, as opposed to Waititi’s Hitler. Also, sorry, I’m pretty allergic to the comedy of Rebel Wilson.
I’ve mixed reactions to Waititi’s films. The ones that everyone praises, such as Hunt for the Wilderpeople and Boy, I pretty much hated, while I completely loved What We Do In the Shadows, which seems to be everyone’s least favourite. For me the common factor was a kid as the principal character. This further gave me trepidation going into this one, but it was also the biggest surprise. The chemistry between the young Roman Griffin Davis and Thomasin McKenzie was perfect, and this relationship made the film for me.
An enjoyable enough romp if you can keep the real horrors out of your head. Maybe it helps deal with the real horrors that surround us today.
Speaking of horror, I know Waititi’s dance card is rather full for the next few years, but I really hope he gets back to We’re Wolves.