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June 29, 2007

Bridge to Terabithia - 6

Based on the book by Katherine Paterson and directed by Gabor Csupo, this film is about being young and finding the courage and strength to keep imagination alive, despite the closing in of adult realities. Jesse (Josh Hutcherson) is in fifth grade and mostly a loner who has retreated into his drawing of everything that comes across his imagination. When Leslie (AnnaSophia Robb - Because of Winn-Dixie) moves in next door she becomes a friend as her imaginations feed off of Jesse and vice versa. Leslie creates a world of Terabithia in the woods behind their houses in the country. They use there imaginations to find creative ways to fight back against the bullies. As to not spoil the ending, the light-heartedness of their play turns to confronting reality and navigating how to keep one's imagination despite the pressures to conform to cynicism (while avoiding a cheesy form idealism). Playful enough to be fun and serious enough to be a significant film about living the tension of the way the world is and the way the world could be. Engages good questions for both adults and children. Zooey Deschanel has a supporting role as the encouraging music teacher.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

You know that I'm gonna comment on a film starring both Deschanel and Robb, of course.

On a 10-point scale, I gave it a 6.5, as the film's tone seems to force the Biblical considerations without any forewarning, so that these themes are neither built up nor considered much. Thus, while Robb's character is very much a neo-hippie, her counterpart is so lifeless and inert as a character that I cannot much care for his arc. I'm still trying to understand why Robb wouldn't have simply just asked his sister to come along, rather than agree with his silence of their kingdom around her.

Also, occasional odd slow-mo sequences through off the rhythm for me. Nearly excellent, but never quite there.