Wonder is a movie that will make you laugh, cry and is full of ‘wonder.’
In the year full of Superhero movies this movie felt like the gush of fresh air. Wonder is a simple movie which makes you laugh and brings tears.
Based on the bestselling book by author R.J. Palacio, it revolves around a boy named August aka Auggie who is born with facial differences. Because of his condition, he had to go through various surgeries in his childhood and had to be homeschool. However, now he has to attend the mainstream school as he enters the fifth grade and thereafter the story focuses on his journey through it.
As soon as he goes to school, he is picked by other kids, bullied and feels left out because nobody wants to talk to him. When he is being looked strangely by others, you connect with him and feel sorry for him, but in real life, we would also do the same. Auggie himself addresses this same issue with a fantastic example, and I bet it will surely make you laugh. Being a kid, he sees only good in all and is full of joy, and enjoys each moment. Yes, he does get frustrated by how people treat him, but he copes up with that situation in an instant, that we all can learn from him. As the movie progresses, we get to see the different perspectives of the characters that will go on and leave some impact on his life be it good or bad.
The perspective of each character adds depth to the story and emotions you feel while watching it. Olivia who is Auggie’s elder sister, her viewpoint is most touching of them all. She feels ignored, as parents always care or talk about her brother. She has nobody to talk to or share ups and downs of her life. And when she meets Justin, and he listens to her, she feels connected & content. Through scenes like these movie tries to tell us that we all in our life has felt being ignored or alone but there is always someone around the corner to make us feel comfortable.
There are metaphors in the movie like in beginning, August keeps his face covered as people ignore him so whenever he is happy he sees Chewbacca or astronaut because they are loved for their work not how they look. As the school progresses, Auggie makes a good number of friends, asserting the message that we should always judge a person by his nature & not by his face. In the whole story, parents play the most crucial role as we see towards the end, they are responsible for shaping their kid’s character.
The pacing of the movie is just perfect being a drama, it never felt tedious, or you want to yawn during it. Each actor has done a fantastic work be it child or veteran actors. Julia Roberts and Owen Wilson are just perfect as parents of Auggie. You connect with them and understand the struggles they have to go through. Jacob Tremblay, the actor who plays role August, is up for awards this season, I can assure that. He brings every emotion to the screen just correctly and in few scenes will bring the tear to your eyes (so keep napkins handy).
It’s a movie that doesn’t dwell on special effects but is driven by the power of great story and acting. Stephen Chbosky, the director of the film, has worked wonders with the fantastic cast. He is undoubtedly a good director who understands the power of emotions, as his previous work that is ‘Perks of being a Wallflower’ did the same. Music also lends an excellent taste to the movie, and few song choices just make you feel that moment more deeply.
To summarize I would like to say it’s a movie that focuses on many right messages like how important good parenting is & tries to motivate you by telling you that everyone is unique in this world. As Auggie said, “We all deserve a standing ovation at least once in our lives.” I say we should all give a standing ovation to both book and movie of “Wonder” because, like its characters that get their moments of pure humanity and, of course, dear little Auggie, this story is a wonder. This one is a must watch, and you should go with your family to feel more connected to them.
Rating – 4.5 stars