As always, the following review is spoiler-free.
Wonder is a heart-string tugging movie about a boy named Auggie who has a deformed face. The story follows Auggie and his family and classmates as they each face individual struggles. Without further ado, here are several observations about the movie and the story.
Human Characters—If one of the main purposes of telling stories is to share experiences and to increase empathy between individuals, Wonder is a top-notch movie. Each character in the film has struggles, goals, and past experiences shaping who they are. None of the characters feel flat or generic, making it easy to set suspend disbelief and join the characters on their journey.
Viewpoint Shifts—Wonder shifts viewpoint several times, filling in the gaps in the story from several characters’ points of view. While such viewpoint shifts can be distracting or confusing, the film does a good job showing transitions into new points of view. It struggles at some points transitioning out of points of view and returning to the main storyline, but this is not a problem for the invested audience member.
Family Accessible—One of the crowning achievements of Wonder is its accessibility. Both children and adults can watch the the film and stay entertained and learn. While most movies shy away from exploring how children and adults can work together, especially in family settings, Wonder does a great job digging into the complexity of human relationships. Siblings can help each other, children can help parents, friends can support each other, and parents can help children.
Overall, I give Wonder a five out of five star rating. The movie is touching and genuine. I finished the film wanting to be a better person and full of hope. I recommend the movie for children, teens, and adults of all ages. Parents should be aware that there are some scenes with bullying and the film does touch on the theme of death. The film serves as an excellent conversation starter for parents and teachers who want to bring up difficult topics with children.
Watching the movie made me excited to read the book. I’ll let you know how it compares when I read it. Have you seen Wonder? What did you think of the film?
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