Movies are my thing…The Way Way Back: A Review

Besides being actual Awards season, this is my favorite time of year for movies. With the a multitude of great dramas set to come out in the next few months, I’ve decided that since my boyfriend and I will see most of these, I’d write reviews on the movies that we see. I used to do this a lot back in High School in just a notebook – so I’ll just carry it over to cyberspace. These reviews may help others find something to watch, or just be an outlet for me to feel like Roger Ebert. Here’s to a great season of movies and Thank God the year of Sci-Fi is almost over. Here’s the first one…

The Way Way Back:

A few minutes into The Way Way Back, you may think you watching a spin off of Little Miss Sunshine. Toni Collette resembles her LMS character, although Steve Carrell has ditched his white jump suit and suicidal tendenices and is now playing a shovinistic “step-father” figure. Although similar to feel, The Way Way Back feels fresh from the start and the indie hipster soundtrack only adds to the charm.

The film starts off with Duncan, a socially awkward and semi depressed child of divorce, sitting in the back of a car on his way to his mom’s boyfriend, Trent’s (played by Carell) beach house for the summer. While his mother and Trent’s daughter are sleeping in the car, Trent calls Duncan “3” on a scale from “1-10”. Thus, the pace of the film is set and for any child that has had to go through divorce or dealing with a parent’s boyfriend of girlfriend, a relatable story begins to unfold.

Besides being a real and relatable story, the other thing that sets this movie apart from other’s like it, are the performances. This ensemble is quite extensive, featuring the ever hilarious Allison Janney, Amanda Peet, Sam Rockwell, Maya Rudolph and Anna Sophia Robb, in addition to Collette and Carell. But the kid steals the show…newcomer Liam James is perfect. The story is told through his eyes and he lets you feel his awkwardness, his sadness, his confliction, his rejection, his acceptance, his happiness, his anger and his hope.  The most heartfelt scenes however, are found between Sam Rockwell’s character Owen, an aging, fun loving Water Park owner and Duncan.

You’ll laugh, you’ll cry, you’ll feel torn, you’ll get angry, you’ll get swept up with The Way Way Back. I’d give it an “8.5”, not a “3”.

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