I went to see Boyhood last night & what a treat it was!
The film was shot intermittently over a twelve-year period, as protagonist Ellar Coltrane grew from childhood to adulthood. Filming began in the summer of 2002 and was completed in October 2013. Upon its release, the film was declared a landmark by many notable film critics, with particular praise aimed at the film's direction, acting, and scope.
Rotten Tomatoes describes it as "Epic in technical scale but breathlessly intimate in narrative scope, Boyhood is a sprawling investigation of the human condition"
As a viewer we are regularly asked to suspend our disbelief in order for events unfolding in front of our eyes to have a genuine impact. Not so with this incredible 'life's-work' of Richard Linklater.
Viewers are often distracted in coming of age journeys, busy assessing how well cast the various children are, and how effective the fake wrinkles are on the A-lister we relish seeing disguised as a geriatric.
In 'Boyhood' it is delightfully easy to quickly become hopelessly immersed in the story. It feels like we are recounting memories of real people from our own lives.
As the film comes towards it's conclusion & we see the mother of two having the predictable tear filled crisis that both her children have flown the nest, for the first time ever, I felt genuine empathy, as her feelings triggered the realisation that my own journey with this wonderful family was also coming to an end.
As a Producer myself I suspect this is a fairly bold statement but I genuinely don't want to break the magic by researching how the film was produced. How it was scripted (was any of it real?? The inclination towards saying yes is too wonderful to burst), the mundanities of scheduling and contracts....
For now anyway I'm just going to enjoy the magic of a fantastic and incredibly real story, very well told.