In all of middle school, there was one poem that stood out to me above the rest (at least, until the end of this article): William Butler Yeats’s “The Ballad of Father Gilligan”. In hindsight–and a re-read–the poem, is not really that special, it’s about a priest during the black plague. More than the poem itself, what drew me to this piece of literary work was the discussion. We talked about how “other poets” and writers during Yeats’s time would write about the disasters, or events from a third person perspective. Yeats was one of the only people focusing on the individual living their daily life, during the big event or disaster. Jojo Rabbit (2019), is exactly like Yeats’s work. What does the life of a child look like during the harshness of WWII Germany?
I have said this numerous times, and will continue to say this, Taika Waititi is one of those filmmakers that we will look back on in another 20 years, and add his filmography to the film history canon. This person has managed to beautifully craft something that is so human and so genuine that I’m at a loss of words, but not at a loss of emotions.
With “Love conquers all” as a cornerstone to this film, it reminds us of all that we have to love in our lives. People, experiences, wonderment. All these are things that a movie with a Nazi kid and an imaginary Hitler taught me, a grown adult. So needless to say, What a film.
Before going in to watch this movie, I was afraid that my mind might wander during it: Sometimes, absurdist comedies have a tendency to bore me, even though they are my favorite kind of comedy. Instead, I was captivated throughout. Nothing in this movie, despite it’s absurdist nature, made me think that I was watching a film. Everything felt real. How Waititi manages to balance the absurd with the real, I will never understand. All I know is that I want him to continue doing so.
Is this movie worth paying money to go watch in the theaters? No doubt about it.
As soon as it comes out, however, I plan on re-watching this only so I can write an analysis on the film. But, until then, I get to live with the satisfaction that all the movies I’ve looked forward to this year, have not disappointed me so far. No pressure Knives Out.