Cracker by Damian Christie

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Cracker: About a Boy

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  • BenWilson,

    You've sold me. Will check it out on the weekend.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 10653 posts Report Reply

  • Robbie Siataga,

    Im keen, but i tend not to do comedies at the big screen, preferring to get blazed at home and watch them at leisure on DVD.

    if i'm gonna spend 30 odd bucks at the movies there better be hot bodies, blood, carnage and some epic special effects.

    incidentally what previous comedy did Boy just surpass to be more successful than ?

    Since Feb 2010 • 259 posts Report Reply

  • Craig Ranapia,

    One reviewer said he thought some of the film's more emotional moments were ruined, or at least didn't reach their full potential because the director would cut to a gag.

    Oh, let's translate that into "you're not a real Kiwi film unless you leave the theatre in a state of suicidal angst." I wouldn't say Boy is a perfect film by any measure, and I totally get why some might find it (like Eagle vs, Shark) too self-consciously quirky and awkward to get with. But I just found rather refreshing to see a film full of Maori who aren't patched wife beaters and victims of colonialist/neo-liberal opression.

    North Shore, Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 12370 posts Report Reply

  • Paul Campbell,

    Loved it - and the umm final dance number just cracked me up - and the audience burst into applause

    Dunedin • Since Nov 2006 • 2622 posts Report Reply

  • recordari,

    This is where I spent most of my childhood holidays, and lived just along the road from. The people, the places, the smells, the garages, crayfish, humility, bravery, despair and bare faced humanity all resonated so strongly I was laughing and crying from the first scene to the last. It left me feeling like I used to after a hangi at Aunties on boxing day. Privileged to be part of a world without judgement, requiring no entry fee, and full of love and forgiveness.

    Sorry for the overblown hyperbole, but feels like I've been waiting for this movie since I was 8.

    Aroha nui Taika.

    Crazy Horses forever, you eggs!

    AUCKLAND • Since Dec 2009 • 2607 posts Report Reply

  • BenWilson,

    Word, Craig. Kiwi film is too bloody dark as a rule. That's good, as far as it goes, but surely a wider range would be better. They do comedy better over the Tasman, and I feel that it can easily be used to enhance tragedy even more.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 10653 posts Report Reply

  • Cecelia,

    Don't agree at all. Yes the final dance number was great (a la Slumdog Millionaire) but I still think Waititi has sold out. His short films showed originality and even brilliance and huge potential. I loved the start of Boy in the school with the cynical teacher and after that there were some super moments.

    But I don't think the film knew where it was going. The humour from the father and gang was quirky to the point of the sentimentality and I think we can overdo the cute Maori "Not even ao!" type of fond humour. There was real pathos at times. Towards the end I thought it would develop some sort of mana - but no - not really.

    So there was an uneasy mix of humour and pathos.

    And he plundered his own successful film Two Cars One Night. Shot for shot he reprised it in parts. And the kiwi iconography if that's a word was not an unselfconscious mix: Billy T James and the Goodnight Kiwi etc. And then the borrowing from Holes if I might assume that.

    Cinematogrpahy and acting of the main characters was great - Rocky in particular was sooo good but there was some clumsy acting too and I think the narrative dragged a bit.

    Waititit must have more stories in his head than this.

    Sorry to be a sourpuss. I just had such high expectations and one shouldn't.

    Hibiscus Coast • Since Apr 2008 • 559 posts Report Reply

  • Lyndon Hood,

    I'm reminded: A couple of things I've seen at the welly arts festivals have driven home that if you've earned your sentimental ending, doing something creatively silly while you're about it can actually switches things up a level.

    The Arrival was the one this year.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 1115 posts Report Reply

  • BlairMacca,

    It was ok, but not the greatest. I too thought Two Cars, One night had more in it than in Boy. A little too cliched and easy really.
    I feel if they had focused more on the children and less on the father it would have been a much better film.

    Wellington • Since Apr 2007 • 208 posts Report Reply

  • Robbie Siataga,

    I just found rather refreshing to see a film full of Maori who aren't patched wife beaters and victims of colonialist/neo-liberal opression.

    I too have a dream of fighting the power while riding the whale...

    Since Feb 2010 • 259 posts Report Reply

  • BenWilson,

    recordari, I've only visited that area once in my life - a week at a school camp, aged 12. We stayed at Waipiro Bay, in a Marae. It's emblazoned on my memory as one of the best weeks of my life. A bunch of mates and I just pissed off down the beach and hung out living rough for days on end, only coming back for food. Man, we were relaxed by the end of it, and we really got to know each other. Days of body-surfing, fishing, exploring. Nights of campfires, stories and dares. It felt almost dreamlike, like stepping into a different time.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 10653 posts Report Reply

  • 3410,

    By the way, when's Peter Jackson's Film Comission review due? ;)

    Auckland • Since Jan 2007 • 2618 posts Report Reply

  • Danielle,

    I totally get why some might find it (like Eagle vs, Shark) too self-consciously quirky and awkward to get with

    Oh bugger. I was hoping for an improvement on that score.

    Charo World. Cuchi-cuchi!… • Since Nov 2006 • 3828 posts Report Reply

  • philipmatthews,

    But I just found rather refreshing to see a film full of Maori who aren't patched wife beaters and victims of colonialist/neo-liberal opression.

    I enjoy agreeing with Craig. I thought: an indigenous movie that didn't feel it had to be an Issues movie. Unlike Warriors or Whale Rider, you could have set the same story in any community; it just happened to be one Taika knew.

    Christchurch • Since Nov 2007 • 656 posts Report Reply

  • Stewart,

    Saw this with Darling Beloved on Sunday and really loved it.
    Haven't seen the 2 Cars 1 Night so didn't have anything to compare it with and be disappointed in that comparison.

    I found most of the characterisation muy simpatico and well rendered. The story, I felt, wasn't meant to be too deep, just a celebration of youth in the day. An extended vignette if you like.

    Te Ika A Maui - Whakatane… • Since Oct 2008 • 577 posts Report Reply

  • Jo S,

    I really enjoyed this movie, even if you take it at one of it's shallower levels about being a kid in NZ in the eighties (as I was), it's a lot of fun.
    I came out of the movie with a big grin on my face and having really enjoyed my evening.

    (although I did think that the short piece of film we got to see with Taika apologising for being too busy with "Green Lantern" to be there was a bit of a show stealer)

    is it autumn yet? • Since May 2007 • 80 posts Report Reply

  • Geoff Lealand,

    incidentally what previous comedy did Boy just surpass to be more successful than

    Sione's Wedding

    I saw Boy at a preview and the audience laughed up a gale. Another example, I guess, of what Sam Neill now refers to as a New Zealand cinema at ease-- (revising his former judgement of __cinema of unease?) I must say that Taika is a very generous fellow--I sent him a whole bunch of questions, for a profile I am doing for the Australia media magazine Metro and fullsome replies came back within a week.

    Screen & Media Studies, U… • Since Oct 2007 • 2558 posts Report Reply

  • Emma Hart,

    I was hoping for an improvement on that score.

    If it's any consolation, Danielle, (and it won't be) my mother had that problem with Eagle vs Shark, and she loved Boy.

    Christchurch • Since Nov 2006 • 4651 posts Report Reply

  • 3410,

    Mine too.

    Auckland • Since Jan 2007 • 2618 posts Report Reply

  • Ian MacKay,

    "Boy" is a brilliant movie. Agree with all you said Damian. In addition it is so refreshing to see something that was not pretentious, not insincere or manipulative, and not high tech as most American films tend to be. An honest, quirky, clever, funny, sad, worthwhile way to spend an hour or so. And it carries a pleasant aftertaste!

    Bleheim • Since Nov 2006 • 498 posts Report Reply

  • Kyle Matthews,

    Oh bugger. I was hoping for an improvement on that score.

    I only saw Eagle vs Shark recently (I think it was on TV?), and I found it boring and tedious. The ungainly lead characters just annoyed me, rather than entertained.

    I do wonder if it would have been better if it had been told about two young people: 10 - 12 year olds. Rather than two adults who seemed to act that way.

    Since Nov 2006 • 6243 posts Report Reply

  • recordari,

    Days of body-surfing, fishing, exploring. Nights of campfires, stories and dares. It felt almost dreamlike, like stepping into a different time.

    Yes, all that too. Sitting in a tractor tyre while others dive down for kina and crays. It's still there, and much unchanged. Last time I was down there (last year) boys about Boy's age were diving down off the rocks and filling sacks of kaimoana. Material wealth and more of more drives much of what happens in the big ciy, but I wonder if we're missing the point.

    Nostalgia. Humour me.

    AUCKLAND • Since Dec 2009 • 2607 posts Report Reply

  • Che Tibby,

    it is a great film, and almost the only one i've seen all year.

    personally i'd call it once were warriors without all the freaking angst. it really is worth seeing on the big screen.

    and... it was a tiny bit like growing up in the mount. being called an egg rang pretty true.

    the back of an envelope • Since Nov 2006 • 2042 posts Report Reply

  • Robyn Gallagher,

    And he plundered his own successful film Two Cars One Night. Shot for shot he reprised it in parts.

    "Boy" originally started as a feature-length version of "Two Cars, One Night", so that's where the similarities come from. But as the script was developed, the film became its own thing, necessitating a different title.

    Raglan • Since Nov 2006 • 1946 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha,

    I too have a dream of fighting the power while riding the whale...

    roflnui

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 19719 posts Report Reply

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