Cinematic Conversations at Greenville University is a class focused around watching and discussing movies. One of the showings this year featured Jojo Rabbit. For those who might not know, Jojo Rabbit is a movie about a young German boy that wants to be a brave soldier when he grows up. There is one little twist: Jojo has an imaginary friend and it is none other than Adolf Hitler. As Jojo goes through many troubling events, he begins to find what he truly desires. Initially, I thought it was going to be just some humorous film making fun of Nazi ideals. While this movie does make fun of them, it also keeps a level of seriousness throughout the development of the film.
This movie found a way to combine a funny idea with a tragic historical event. This may seem like it is something that would be insensitive and cause problems, but it pays respects to the events and what unfolded. It used the entire movie to build up and show the kind of clouded mindsets that were in the heads of Nazis. With this movie, producers were able to convey the evil ideals of the Nazis conflicting with the naiveness of a child still learning. Along with the development and growth of Jojo came changes amongst other characters. They used Jojo as a sort of catalyst through which to leave imprints on characters and make them grow themselves. Around every corner, you can see the influence one little boy can have on a multitude of people. Taika Waititi does a great job pulling every theme used together to make a wholesome feature.
Did This Movie Maybe Come Too Soon?
The Holocaust is one of few events in history that has stayed a sensitive topic. For obvious reasons, jokes are still frowned upon about the topic today. The creators of this film knew what they were getting into when they decided to design this movie. It is not the easiest thing to make a movie from a child’s perspective, but to make the child an uneducated Nazi as well unlocks a whole new region not yet explored. Having this new point of view gives the viewer a new way of looking at the events and insight into what went through the heads of the general public. This leads to the humor aspect of the movie. Should the humor aspect of the film be there? It feels like the humor helps to fully keep the right tone for the film. This film is based on a child’s life and children are not all about being serious. Having a bit of humor does not mean that the film takes away from the severity of the events, however. Waititi was able to provide the much-needed humor without dropping the serious tone of the film. Films like this need to be supported, as they are able to present history in a way that people can enjoy as opposed to the history books that are given in school.
Jojo Rabbit is a wonderful story of a child that strives to follow his dreams. As he develops as a person, Jojo finds that what he wanted may not have actually been what he desired originally. This film successfully tackled the tragic events of the past in a way that is enjoyable and respectful. Is it worth a watch? Absolutely. Make sure to pay attention to the small things and you could learn something from it. Remember to be fierce like a rabbit.