The 2014, released drama, of a coming-of-age life story, of a boy is truly one to marvel about. The best part about it is, it is actually shot over a period of more than 12 years, and the aging of the actors is just as real as it is on the reel.

It follows the story of a boy named Mason Evans (Ellar Coltrane), a young boy who has just seen his parents get divorced and lives with his sister, Samantha (Lorelei Linklater) with their mom, Olivia (Patricia Arquette).

The story follows the line of how, Olivia after being divorced from Mason Evans Sr., she struggles to be a single parent, manages the house somehow to keep a roof on top of their heads the whole time, be the sole breadwinner of the house while at the same time, be there to read Harry Potter to the kids at night.

As a child, even though Mason doesn’t put a lot of effort into his studies, he grows up to be someone who is very interested in art and photography and takes it up as a full-time interest at the university, achieving a scholarship, after graduating from high school.

The whole movie revolves around the life of Mason and shows how two children, while going through their growing-up phase in life, also have to act like mature adults, even when they constantly move houses or see the father figure in their life change.

It may not have been a huge commercial success, but it sure was a very critically-acclaimed film, and even managed to win an Oscar for the Best Supporting Actress for Patricia Arquette – who played the role of Olivia. There are quite a few interesting reasons why one should watch Boyhood. Here are some of those:

  • Direction – by Richard Linklater. The direction of the movie, like its praises, is extremely real. The high and lows of life, specially when the children had to face an alcoholic and potentially abusive step-father, are extremely well captured, and portray the same fear, the same angst that a real family would under such circumstances. Know how they say, an actor is as good as the director?
  • Music – tunes by Jeff Tweedy, Coldplay, Gotye, and Flaming Lips. What more to say other than the fact that the opening scene itself starts with Coldplay’s Yellow? The movie may be dramatic at some points, but the background score copes up very well with same. Boyhood presents a feel, that very few other movies manage to capture.
  •  Screenplay – by Richard Linklater. Given the fact that Boyhood actually took so many years to film and managed to portray its characters in the literal sense of how they grew up, the story-line has also taken up those roles and fit them perfectly into the narration. It shows the kind of stages an American individual with a difficult childhood might go through in their life.

All in all, on a personal note, I’d definitely recommend the movie. At least if not a rainy-day, binge watch, at least an intellectual, get-for-an-assignment kind of watch.

It can get a little too dragged-out for a couple of scenes and year plots, but all in all, it is definitely a movie that you need to watch at least once in your life to understand all the phases in an American’s – and in this case – Mason’s life, even if it becomes slightly stereotypical at times. The end is slightly abrupt, but it clearly sends out the message – “Life must go on”.

The Red Sparrow gives this one 3 stars and recommends it to everyone who needs a fresh perspective on friends, family and life.


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