New Zealand “Hunt for the Wilderpeople”: Charmlingly Offbeat
Something about summer – more relaxed, more socializing…the best summer movies are usually happier and lighter.
Often, summer movies can be light on substance. But this isn’t the case with “Hunt for the Wilderpeople”. Make no mistake; it is a comedy, and you will laugh. But it’s not a site-gag film; it has substance. Here’s how the NY Times review begins:
““Hunt for the Wilderpeople” takes a troika of familiar story types — the plucky kid, the crusty geezer, the nurturing bosom — and strips them of cliché. Charming and funny, it is a drama masquerading as a comedy about an unloved boy whom nobody wants until someone says, Yes, I’ll love him. Much of the humor comes from the child, who’s at once a pip and a gloriously expressive ambassador for the director Taika Waititi’s cleareyed take on human nature and movies. Mr. Waititi knows that we love to cry at sad and bad times, but he also knows that people in pain need to get on with their lives.”
This is director Taika Waititi’s third film, but he is increasingly a filmmaker to watch:
“Mr. Waititi’s expansive sense of human beings in “Hunt for the Wilderpeople” allows his characters to endure loss and hardship without forcing them to be wholly limited by their suffering, as marginalized people too often are in fiction … He’s still finding his way, but he’s already a director who — as he does in a shot of a friendly, undefeated child pausing to wave at a pursuer — can distill a worldview into a single, perfect cinematic moment.”
Here’s the full review from the New York Times: