The BFG (USA, 2016)

bfg_ver2Directed by: Steven Spielberg. Normally I don’t really go for kids movies, but when it came up for professional reasons, I didn’t grimace too badly—Spielberg and Rylance, should be good, right? And it was, as I expected, thoroughly okay. Very enjoyable, good little adventure story, lots of quirky talk and wonder and imagination and interesting new worlds and the threat of intense danger and violence with those big bad giants. But I’m not gonna lie, the ending was kind of crap. Knowing very little about the source material, I’ll just say that this one succumbs to the same fate that probably a lot of kids’ books-to-films suffer in translating the needs of one medium to another. An idea that works really well in a book, a self-contained, finite little universe, has to be expanded and exploded into something that fits the demands of a Hollywood kids’ thriller, and those are actually pretty demanding constraints. In this case, what I’m talking about is the entire bit with the Queen—the last third of the movie almost. That whole thing was pretty over-the-top cheesy, and the forced happy ending, though I know it’s a kids movie, was a bit blah to me. Really, though, I should just stop watching kids movies.

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