Recently, my friend and I watched Christopher Robin in the luxury of gold class. We’ve been meaning to see it for some time, and it was a treat to finally witness the characters come to life. I remember viewing Winnie the Pooh on Saturday mornings when I was little. It was one of the first programmes I can recall, together with Sesame Street, Captain Planet, The Simpsons, and Madeline. The film version did not disappoint; my friend surmising that ‘It was worth it’.
Goodbye, old self
Set mostly in post-war London, we see the transformation of the title character from a fun-loving boy who gets sent to boarding school. As a child, he is enamoured of his friends: Winnie, Tigger, Piglet, Rabbit, Roo, and company. They are much more than just stuffed toys; they are his companions, his world. He leaves with a heavy heart, but is gradually transformed to a hardworking student and a fine young man. He meets his future wife on a serendipitous bus ride, and works at a luggage company. Consumed with job, he neglects his family and forgets about Winnie and friends. As his daughter asks him to read her a story, he gets out a book on the Industrial Revolution. This is emblematic of the divide between father and kin.
Attempting to wiggle out of a tight spot at work, who else would turn up but Winnie? At first he is surprised, but becomes annoyed and angry as the latter constantly distracts him from his toiling. This reminded me a bit of The Cat in the hat with Mike Meyers. The picture was very lighthearted, a veritable family flick. The characters were well developed and the action, easy to follow. The film strikes a chord to viewers: it’s a ‘nostalgic thrill ride’ that conjures up the good bits of our childhood. Christopher’s adventures highlight the importance of family and living a balanced life. Though he has changed, Robin still protects Winnie and the gang from so-called heffalumps and woozles as a returning, bona fide adult. Touching.
Everyone could potentially feel the movie’s magic. I’m sure many of us could relate to a blissful childhood and daunting school years. Films like this remind us not to take things too seriously, while standing up for something. Anyhow, I saw Crazy Rich with another friend three weeks ago. That production was groundbreaking, funny, and different. This one, while not pioneering, sure had its light moments, was breezy, and good fun. This was also a time machine, with old black cabs, dated trains, retro coats and terraces. What’s more: there is real change among characters in the film. It’s not just fun and games, but true maturity. In that respect, it is at least on par with other above-average G-rated movies, if not better. Indeed, Winnie reminded me of Lotso from Toy Story, huggable and charming. My longtime friend noted though that the two have very different personalities: Lotso was in truth aggressive and two-faced. Who would have thought that a trip to Hundred Acre Wood was all Christopher needed to find his meaning of life?
My pal thought it was a lovely movie, but was kinda one-dimensional. When asked for his rating, he said it’s 3.5 out of 5. That’s right where this sits with critics, hovering near seventy percent. However, I liked the visuals, childhood magic, and cute storyline.
Rating: 3.75 (out of 5)