Direction and script: Taika Waititi. Interpreters: Roman Griffin Davis, Taika Waititi, Scarlett Johansson, Thomasin McKenzie, Sam Rockwell. USA, 2019. Duration: 108 minutes Tragicomedy.
Six Oscar nominations, including the best movie and supporting actress sections for a Scarlett Johansson who seems to have dropped her hat from a rooftop. Tyrolean? that looks in the movie, what does not stop me from doing a great job, go; and many others for the Bafta, in the past Golden Globes … What a surprise and what an exaggeration, even if we go in parts. True, the idea of ”JoJo Rabbit” is overwhelmingly unprecedented: a lonely German boy discovers one day that his mother, a single woman, hides a Jewish girl in the attic of the house. But there is more, The boy has an imaginary friend, Adolf Hitler himself (which Taika Waititi interprets as if it were a crazy Monty Phyton and that is also the director of the film; exaggerated and even irritating, sometimes it is the worst thing about the film), which transforms him into a Nazi convinced while the German army is slowly losing the war.
Based on Christine Leunens ‘novel, the film explodes with joy during its first minutes while the Beatles’ music plays (even Bowie we will hear later) and brings us, through the split screen, to the delusional phenomenon of the fans for, of a dry blow, set aside humor and show the hanged bodies of “traitors.” In that tug of war between drama and comedy lies one of the biggest problems of the film, because, as we said, Waititi loves to be on the screen with the mane, not loose, but disheveled, and sometimes the transit of a genre to another squeaks in a title very much in the line of “Life is beautiful”, although more surreal and less rested and emotional than Benigni’s.
Above the violence, racism, death, terror, the long and sinister figure of the dictator himself, the scenes with that guy with the ridiculous mustache eating the head of a unicorn in a supreme act of evil for a minor , or in others imitating the big and “dictator” Chaplin, of the dehumanization, in short, of the human being turned into a scared little mouse for those who only inhabit the monsters behind the door, the worst thing is to discover the small protagonist to release the births, lusts, ignoble propaganda traps instilled in iron and fire by the party. Until the boy wakes up to reality and realizes that life in that country, in that Europe, was not beautiful and was nothing at all.