Believe it or not, I actually saw the movie at an honest to goodness movie theater, namely the Alamo Drafthouse. I know that this is a shameless plug, but they are quickly becoming my favorite movie theater. I love the Alamo because they obviously love movies, and they make going to the movies fun again. With good movie prices, and amazing food and drink choices, they are a great location for movie enjoyment. Sorry, I got sidetracked there, on with the movie review.
Boyhood is a movie about exactly what the title says, boyhood. This movie is actually quite unique as it follows the same actors through 12 years of life. When I say follows them, I truly mean follows the same actors as they age. It is truly a marvel to watch the children grow into adults on screen. Mason, the main character of the film, is only 5 at the beginning and 18 at the end.
Life is up on the big screen in all its glory, and horror. There are scenes in the film that are very uncomfortable, just like in real life. As an example, late in the film Mason's biological father is talking to his older sister Samantha about birth control. It is so honest, and difficult to watch, because it brings to mind experiences that I had in my own life. This is the true beauty of this film, that everyone can relate to aspects of it in one way or another.
The acting is actually quite natural and seemingly honest. Given that the main character of Mason is played by a relative newcomer Ellar Coltrane. Ellar portrays some very intense emotions for someone so young. His facial expressions are perfect for each emotional state the character finds himself in. There are a couple of seasoned actors in this film as well. Patricia Arquette and Ethan Hawke, give amazing performances as Mason's biological parents. Patricia is as powerful as ever in this role of a mother just trying to provide what is best for her two children. Patricia is no stranger to the role of the strong, powerful heroin having played Allison Dubois in the TV show Medium. Ethan Hawke does a great job playing the father to Mason and Samantha. He actually makes you fall in love with his seemingly deadbeat dad character. Kudos to you sir for pulling that off as well as you did.
Costumes play a pretty big part in this film as in other film since it is filmed over such a large span of time. The actors are always growing and new costumes would have to be found for each section of time being portrayed. I could only imagine the effort that went into choosing the right wardrobe for every time change. Having assisted a wardrobe supervisor on a
film, I know how much work can go into picking out costumes for such
things. So, I always make sure to give credit to the people who work so hard to get
other people dressed.
The music in this film is really spot on. There are many great indie tracks in the film such as "Do you realize" by the Flaming Lips, and "Deep Blue" by Arcade Fire. Music can really set the tone for the emotions that we are feeling in life; such is the soundtrack of this film. Each song seems to add the perfect emotion to the moment. This is not an easy feat as I am sure you can imagine.
If you have read any of my other reviews you know that I am a sucker for personal growth and indie films in general, so it is no wonder that I loved this movie. This would be a great date movie if you do not mind the long run time. This film is three hours and fifteen minutes long, so perhaps it is best that you see it at the Alamo, since you can get food while watching the film. On the plus side you do not have to worry about your date seeing you stuff your face since you would be eating in the dark.
I rate this film five out of five smiley Mike heads. The deep characters, with all their flaws are compelling, and amazing to watch on screen. Definitely not a film for the easily bored, but you should find the characters entertaining enough to hold your interest throughout the entirety of the film.