Writer: Taika Waititi (Screenplay) Christine Leunens (Novel)
Starring: Roman Griffin Davis, Thomasin McKenzie, Scarlett Johansson, Taika Waititi, Sam Rockwell, Rebel Wilson, Alfie Allen, Stephen Merchant
Plot: a young boy in Hitler’s army finds out his mother is hiding a Jewish girl in their home.
Runtime: 1 Hour 48 Minutes
There may be spoilers in the rest of the review
Verdict: Funny & Heart Breaking
Story: Jojo Rabbit starts when a young boy Jojo (Davis) is going to a camp to learn to be part of the Nazi army being taught by Captain Klenzendorf (Rockwell), he has an imaginary friend in Adolf Hitler (Waititi) who is always there to help him through the difficult decisions. Only the training doesn’t go well, when he ends up nearly blowing himself up, being reduced down to help with the propaganda campaign.
When Jojo learns this his mother Rosie (Johansson) has been hiding a Jewish girl Elsa (McKenzie) in her walls, he gets conflicted on what to do, wanting to follow his leaders beliefs about Jews or learning that Jews are people, not a threat and his leader isn’t everything he believed him to be.
Thoughts on Jojo Rabbit
Characters – Jojo is a young boy that is living in German during World War II, he knows his father went to war and now he wants to do his part, he idolises Hitler having his own version guiding him through the difficult decisions he will face, his life is turned upside down when he learns he has a Jew living in his walls and wants to get to know her before deciding whether to do his duty or not. Elsa is the young lady hiding in the walls of Jojo’s house, she is Jewish which Jojo sees as a threat. She does show Jojo about the truth about how they are both the same and they shouldn’t be treated differently. Rosie is the mother of Jojo, she is raising him alone and she has chosen to let Elsa stay in their home, she won’t risk her own son’s life though, she does know how pointless the war is from what the Nazi’s were planning. Adolf is Jojo’s imaginary friend, he is always around when Jojo isn’t complete sure what to do next in a flamboyant way.
Performances – Roman Griffin Davis in the leading role here is fantastic, he shows us the breaking of innocence his characters goes through in such a beautiful way, while Thomasin McKenzie is wonderful too, showing the different levels of strength she needs to get through each day in hiding. Scarlett Johansson, Taika Waititi and Sam Rockwell shine in the supporting roles of the movie too.
Story – The story here follows a young boy who is living through World War II and wants to be part of the fighting like his father, he is blindly led into believing Hitler is right, showing his passionate following, only to learn the errors of his ways once he finds a Jew hiding in his house. This story is done in a satirical way, it still manages to get the serious side of the story over though, we see just how easily people would have been left blindly follow Hitler, while the true horrors of the war are slowly shown through what happens to Jojo. We are going to get plenty of moments that are enjoyed, plenty that will be emotional broken too. This is done in such a beautiful way that does show the breaking of innocence that Jojo goes through.
Comedy – The comedy in this film is satirical and will give you plenty of laugh out loud moments through the film.
Settings – The film is set in the small German town which is preparing for an attack during the war, it shows us how they were prepared and still tried to remain the same as normal.
Final Thoughts – This is one of best comedies that will get laughs and shows the horrors of war for the children involved, with heart breaking effects.
Overall: Outrageously Entertaining.