Boyhood (2014) Directed by Richard Linklater
So, what's this then? A confession. I hadn't watched Boyhood till last week. Probably the most talked about film of 2014 (or was that American Sniper?) So, anyway, this is now. What can I say? In 2015 the thought of going to see art-house/artistic, realistic movies fills me with dread. In 2015 I want my cinema to be larger than life and contain some elements that are pure escapism. That doesn't mean it can't be political or deal with real issues. This may sound infantile, but I've probably been worn down by the art-house. I started watching left-field cinema since my early teens. It doesn't mean I still don't have favourite movies from the art-house – I'd say most of my faves probably are. But I can't take, well meaning, liberal, deep, quirky etc anymore. I paid my dues. Yet, here's my rub. With music, I've remained singularly and stubbornly indie. Can't stand the machinations of the mainstream. Yet, the mainstream is kicking serious indie ass (or at least it is if one is judging by the media coverage in Finland). With film, give me Avengers Assembled over Boyhood anytime.
|the young Mason|
|the older Mason|
|the even older Mason|
This was my second time watching Boyhood. I think I mentioned it in some other review here the first time I saw it – without Nick. The film really tugged at my heartstrings for many reasons. For me it is both a home-coming and a breath of fresh air. I will probably want to watch this movie a couple more times during my life, as I watch my own child grow. I am a fan of most of Linklater's work – especially the Julie Delpy and Ethan Hawke material (Before Sunrise, Before Sunset and Before Midnight), which also expands over time and wants to enter into dialogue with 'reality' in a way that most films never attempt. In Boyhood cinema's relationship to time becomes even more central. The film is one of the very few movies that has been filmed on and off for 12 years, so that it shows little children grow into young adults and younger adults grow into older adults. It reveals human change unapologetically and with a good sense of humour. The storytelling is loose – it feels like the camera just wanders in (like a lost drone?) and then departs without worrying about 'complete narratives'. We are never explained why the characters make certain choices; nothing appears especially justified or totally wrong. Kind of life-like it that sense too.
|Patricia Arquette in Boyhood|
|Arquette and Coltrane in Boyhood|
|Hawke and Coltrane in Boyhood|