Boyhood (IFC Films)
The life of a young man, Mason, from age 5 to 18.
Starring Ellar Coltrane, Ethan Hawke, Patricia Arquette, Lorelei Linklater. Written and directed by Richard Linklater. Executive Producers: Richard Linklater, Cathleen Sutherland, Jonathan Sehring, John Sloos.
Just finished watching Boyhood. It took a minute for me to warm up to it, but I ultimately really liked it. It was interesting to watch all the central characters age and grow naturally over the years. At first, some of the timestamp elements Richard Linklater used over the 12 years of filming Boyhood were a bit forced and gimmicky and kind of went over like a Haldeman joke, but it ultimately didn’t take away from the experience.
For once, I liked Ethan Hawke in a film. His character’s transformation from freewheeling weekend dad to an insurance salesman with a second chance at parenthood was thankfully devoid of clichés. Patricia Arquette was great as the mom, struggling to find her own place in life while raising two kids. As the kids, Mason and his older sister Sam, Ellar Coltrane and Lorelei Linklater (gee, how’d she get the gig? I wonder…) were good, but not earth shattering. However, Coltrane did nicely in carrying a film that is viewing the world through his eyes.
Overall, I like the overall tone and message of this film. For a film that is nearly three hours in length, it didn’t drag or plod along. In many ways, it reminds me a lot of The Kids Are All Right in that the drama is in the quiet moments. Life isn’t one, big, action-packed adventure. Time just sort of marches on and you have to let the moment seize you.
RATING: ***-1/2 stars (out of five)