That first day of school can be a real doozy!
With the recent success of child casts with hits like “Stranger Things” or “IT”, director Stephen Chbosky (The Perks of Being a Wallflower) took advantage of the huge wave and delivered a heart-tugging gem with Wonder.
This is a film that stares back into the face of hatred, bullying, and contempt for all things different. This is a beautiful story of a young man that tackles the haters and bullies head on and shines a much-needed light on love friendship and acceptance.
Chbosky, in only his third directing credit, was able to bring out performances ripe with heart and compassion from well established adult cast and a green and growing group of youngsters.
Jacob Trembly (“Room”), as August “Auggie” Pullman was unforgettable and drew me into his world with no regrets. It was a world that he embraced with what seemed to be his very fiber. Couple that with solid performances by Julia Roberts and Owen Wilson and you have the makings of a great family that almost anyone can easily root for. Wilson, most known for his comedic turns in classics like “Wedding Crashers” and “Meet the Parents”, added some much needed levity to the emotional and tender story. Roberts did the majority of the emotional heavy lifting and she did not disappoint. Izabela Vidovic’s portrayal of Auggie’s sister Via, was almost as memorable and she is clearly on the precipice of a strong acting career.
This is an uplifting tale that will have you reflecting back on your days of middle and high school, but it will also serve as an escape from your comfort zone. We can all think back to a time when someone came into our individual worlds that was a little different, someone who made us look in the mirror and judge our own souls. This is a story that captures that idea perfectly and will have you questioning how you really treat people.
I would recommend this movie to anyone that has ever experienced being new, being different or being the outcast. For everyone else, I recommend it as well. If the room or theater doesn’t get a little dusty then you need to check to make sure your heart is still in tact.