Boyhood – This One’s for Richard Linklater

I played a word association game in my head. I said “summer movie” and a voice inside my head answered “Boyhood.” I associated Boyhood with summer, may be because I watched the movie in summer, or maybe because the movie’s poster is etched in my mind –

summer movie Boyhood

I look at it, and I wish to lie there in that same green grass and just look at the clouds passing by, weaving infinite thoughts in my mind. At that moment, being there and yet being nowhere. This trance can take over one’s mind only in summers, there is no other season that can do that.

Boyhood is an ambitious project of writer/director Richard Linklater. Probably the more appropriate phrase would be to call it “overly ambitious.”  The movie was filmed over a span of 12 years (from 2002 to 2013) to depict a boy growing up in real time. Linklater started working over the loosely scripted film with six-year-old Mason as the protagonist. The movie was not shot all at once; but for a couple of months every year where the crew came together and shoot the movie. This went on for 12 years, from the time the Mason was in first grade till the time he was done with 12th grade and had moved to college.  You see an adorable child growing up to be an uncertain adolescent growing up to be a bony man. You see his body lengthening, you hear his voice deepening.

movies to watch this summer Boyhood

All through the movie, there isn’t anything extra ordinary happening, there is no big climax. The movie keeps going on, gradually pulling you along with it. Before you know it, you are already part of Mason’s life, cheering for him or advising him to run away from an unpleasant situation. It is beyond my understanding how a movie can be uneventful and yet thought provoking at the same time.

The character of Mason is another wonder. He is the boy who is detached from the word around him. He is always aloof and I wondered if he will ever fit anywhere. He doesn’t really. And yet, he is fine in his own way.

Watching the movie felt like my own life unfolding in front of me – the naïve that I was, the reckless I have been, the lessons I did not learn – always thinking that I would not amount to a thing when I grow up – but at the end turning out just alright.

For me, the movie is an audacious, stunning experiment and epic project. As Liam Lacey in The Globe and Mail points out,

“It’s like a time-lapse photo of an expanding consciousness.”

Take a look at this trailer and tell me that you don’t like it –

#summerwithYellowMellowLife #26daysofYellowMellowLife #atozchallenge #yellowmellowlife #summer movie

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13 Responses

  1. Bhawna Saini says:

    @freya3377 yeah watch it soon! we can discuss it when we meet next!

  2. Bhawna Saini says:

    @ArleeBird @AmyPutkonen I watched the film without any expectations, thought it would be another one of those “oscar kind of” movies. But it was so much more.

  3. freya3377 says:

    I’d heard of Boyhood but I hadn’t paid much attention. Your post blew my mind Bhawna. That Richard Linklater could envision a project that would take 12 years to complete, that the cast would stick by him through it all, that a project like this sees the light of day, is just amazing. I’ve got to watch this one soon, very soon!
    Thanks for the recommend 🙂

  4. Amy Putkonen says:

    It was an interesting experiment. It did not have the pizzazz of most Hollywood filme, but that is part of what gave it its charm.

  5. Arlee Bird says:

    I thought Boyhood was an amazing piece of film making. I expected some tedium in the watching, but I was completely enthralled by the film.

    Arlee Bird
    A to Z Challenge Co-host
    Tossing It Out

  6. Bhawna Saini says:

    @jhwinterauthor @Gayl I loved Linklater’s Before Midnight as well. It is just a long conversation between two strangers but still feels like a romantic movie that can give you those butterflies in the stomach!

  7. Gayl Wright says:

    Sounds like an interesting, thought provoking movie. I think maybe it’s appeal is wide because everyone has to grow up and it just chronicles one boy’s life but touches each of us. I like your take on the A to Z challenge. Thanks for stopping by my blog!

  8. Wonderful sharing review…

    Welcome in the letter “B”… thank you!
    Jeremy [Retro]
    AtoZ Challenge Co-Host [2016]

    Stop over and find a free “SIX STRINGS: BLOGGING AtoZ CHALLENGE” Here:

    You know you want to know if me or Hollywood… is Nuts?

  9. jhwinterauthor says:

    I was amazed that the filmmaker would take on such a challenge by having the characters film over the span of years as they literally grew up on screen. I appreciated the fact that he didn’t use CGI to try to get the same affect. As you said, the movie was uneventful but still left you with that sense of wonder. I agree with My Era on the quote at the front as well. Lovely touch! 🙂

  10. Bhawna Saini says:

    @MyEra Thanks for the kind words. If you like Linklater’s style of movies, this is worth watching.

  11. My Era says:

    I loved the quote at the start of the review. That feeling of lying on the green grass and gazing the sky in summers is just wow.
    I haven’t seen the movie but from your review I feel we all can connect to it with our growing up years in a way.
    Loving your take on the A to Z challenge.
    Keep rocking!

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