Jeff's Reviews

Thoughts on every movie I've ever seen.

Wonder (2017)

Directed by Stephen Chbosky

Starring Jacob Tremblay, Owen Wilson, Izabela Vidovic, Julia Roberts

Author

As this generation’s Mask, it’s heavy stuff. But the storytelling is a little confusing. Are we telling the story from the perspective of Auggie? His parents? His sister? His sister’s friend? Chbosky tried to make it interesting by telling a few different stories, or maybe that’s how the original novel was written, but I think that in this case, it hurts the movie. The vignettes are inconsistent in length and depth, so we don’t get to learn or feel for any of these other characters nearly as much as we do for Auggie. That just means that they are distractions from the real story here, Auggie’s, and reduce the overall drama of the film. And if we’re really trying to tell the story from any perspective other than Auggie’s, then the other vignettes should be expanded significantly, and they should reconsider having all of those cutesy space/Star Wars asides. They should only be there is the story is 100% Auggie’s. Also, some situations and dialogue are also a little predictable, with some scenes playing out like an after-school special.

Tremblay is great. If he keeps this up, delivering strong performances with mature subject matter, and he somehow avoids getting all awkward as an adult, he might be our next great actor. Noah Jupe was good support as Jack Will. I’d like to see what else he can do. Roberts and Wilson give the movie some much-needed ballast.

The facial prosthetics are amazing, but unfortunately it limited Tremblay’s expressiveness. You couldn’t really tell he was upset unless he was yelling or tears were streaming down the latex. Yes, it’s tough to build a truly emotive prosthetic.

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