The title doesn't really make sense, actually. What I mean is, films that are marketed towards children, look like they're for children, usually have more than one child actor and have a child friendly rating. But then when you watch the film you find that actually a child would either get really bored watching it, or it's child friendly for the most part, but there's stuff that no way would a child understand.
For instance, a few months ago I went to the library. I was in a sad mood, can't remember why, and needed cherring up. So I hired The Holiday, a Cameron Diaz/Kate Winslet romcom directed by Nancy Meyers (who is awesome), No Reservations (which, despite the abundance of Catherine Zeta-Jones, was sadly, not too good) and Mr Magorium's Wonder Emporium. The latter is what part inspired this post. I am a fan of Dustin Hoffman and Natalie Portman, and thought, even though it looked really babyish, I might as well borrow it. Boy was I wrong! It was actually really good, and held my attention throughout. The performances, especially from Zac Mills (the small boy in the film, can't remember the name of the character) were inspiring considering the premise and amount of material they had to work with. It shows how a simple story can work really well with a good cast and good actors. The thing is, though, the average under eight year old (the film is a U) would probably have got very bored.
Moving on from this though. Last night I watched Bridge to Terabithia, the first of the three DVDs I brought yesterday. It was fantastic. The directing was great, the special effects were, for once, subtle (less is more, you know, SFX artists), and the screenplay was the best it could be. I want to read the novel now to see how it was adapted.
The performances from the young cast were all pretty good. Josh Hutcherson had improved a lot from Zathura, and even though AnnaSophia Robb's performance was nothing special in this film, I am looking forward to seeing some of her more grown up films such as Sleepwalking, because I'm sure she has a lot more to give. Bailee Madison was so cute, and if she keeps up actign she could be really good in the future. I love Zooey Deschanal, need to see more of her films other than this, Elf and Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy. She's the sort of actress that always delivers a cool and quirky performance yet isn't quite famous enough for the really awesome roles.
I knew the ending, but it still made me cry. The film was well paced, because although it happened really quickly, it didn't seem at all sudden. I don't want to spoil the ending, as it was spoiled for me!
The way the film was filmed was clever, because it was like you were seeing it from Jess' own point of view, without the director resorting to the lazy technique of the voiceover! The relationships between the parents and children in the films, and some of the themes would have been too much for me to understand when I was younger and owuld have gone over my head, which is why I thought this wasn't really a children's film. At the same time though, it didn't have the big name casting or the promise of non stop action to attract a mainstream movie audience, nor the storyline to be an arthouse film. Overall, this is a film that you could grow up with and learn to appreciate more as you got older. It really has something for everyone, because parents could watch this with their children without getting bored and wishing they were watchinf The Dark Knight, or whatever they like. I wish there was a film that I had grown up with, and could still watch and really appreciate!