August 10, 2014 No Comments

Jolyn's pictures-2

On Sunday, August 10, the Reel Deal sponsored and led a discussion of Richard Linklater’s phenomenal new epic “Boyhood.”  The audience who gathered at the Royal Oak Main Theater to experience this unique film had the opportunity to discuss it before re-joining the “real world.”

Nearly three hours long, the film follows the lives of Mason (Ellar Coltrane) from age six to eighteen, winding its way through the events that shaped his growth from young child to lanky adolescent.  Anyone familiar with the film already knows of Linklater’s twelve year odyssey and the intriguing decision to film the same actors yearly.  Ethan Hawke (from Linklater’s “Before” trilogy) joined Coltrane,  Patricia Arquette and Linklater’s own daughter Lorelie committing to a project that evolved as the story and actors also aged.

Linklater has spent decades experimenting with experience of time: the artistic acknowledgement of the shifting, progressive and inevitable march towards the  finite while attempting to live ‘in the moment.”  We see young Mason at age 6, 12, 15, 18 living his life with various degrees of self awareness and questioning.  The editing of the film is so exquisite that we can FEEL the tones and emotions of each situation without being weighed down by the cleverness of the concept.  The dialogue FEELS genuine, as if we had just said it ourselves.  The emotions are raw, but never feel contrived (ie there are no gratuitous death scenes and no car crashes).  Linklater trusts us to follow him on his journey.  There are tears and smiles and nods of appreciation and understanding.  One of the attendees noted that there are multiple arcs, with quiet, emotional moments of transformation afforded to several of the characters, underscoring one of the film’s core ideas:  we are all connected and have the possibility of inspiring each other.

Although the film has a FEEL of documentary-like verite, it is deceptively complex.  Linklater’s use of music winds through the vignettes and provided emotional underpinnings.  If you listen carefully to the “mumble-core-esque” dialogue, you will hear themes looping back and recurring in a most satisfying way.



Jolyn Wagner


Must See Movie of the Week, Reel Deal Goes to the Movies

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