Film Review – Christopher Robin (2018)

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Once again, The Winnie the Pooh franchise claws its way to bigger and better success than its predecessors. Earlier this year we were fortunate enough to learn about the life of A.A Milne in ‘Goodbye Christopher Robin.’ To learn how this writer created one of the children’s most beloved bear characters of all time is a story that should be told. However, to see another edition of the story of Milne’s honey-loving bear is what every child should treat themselves to this summer. It’s innocent, moralistic and sentimental and with those attributes, the chemistry will ignite a perfect potion of delight for families around the globe.

From the premise, the public will immediately compare this film to Spielberg’s 1991 classic ‘Hook.’ An adult Christopher Robin, who is now focused on his new life, work, and family, suddenly meets his old friend Winnie the Pooh, who returns to his unforgotten childhood past to help him return to the Hundred Acre Wood and help find Pooh’s lost friends. Ewan McGregor’s performance of Christopher Robin is enchanting as he is not afraid to let the light-hearted side of his acting come out. He shows a true eclectic prowess in his performance as it doesn’t involve shooting up heroin, or performing rock music with his privates out or being a gay prisoner. Yes! McGregor has an aptitude to swing both ways. He rarely disappoints even when he demonstrates his amiable side of film characters and knows when the right time is to flourish with likable light-hearted characters over his dark ones.

The morals and message of the film are most powerful and only Winnie the Pooh along with Eeyore, Tigger, Piglet, Roo, Kanga, and Owl can help the grown-up, Christopher Robin, to let his guard down, put work aside and put family first. This is the moral that all adults can relate to and try taking its advice. The family must come first rather than focus on a career. More rather having the right balance is what would be considered healthy. All grownups should get in touch with their inner child and McGregor definitely uses his character to develop this.

Hayley Atwell plays Evelyn Robin perfectly. The wife of Christopher Robin garners much sympathy from the audience to want to be loved by her husband but sadly let down. Nonetheless, up and coming child actor Bronte Carmichael playing Robin’s daughter Madeline provides the childlike qualities in the tradition of Spielberg child performances. E.G. ‘Hook.’ Wanting the attention and love of a father is the only aspect a child could want. To play disappointment towards her father is sombre, but to see her transition of appreciating and loving her father in the end as he transitions are very touching and strum a chord in the heart to an excellent standard.

Winnie the Pooh, Piglet, Eeyore and Tigger relax at the beach in Disney’s CHRISTOPHER ROBIN.

Overall it is the CGI work of Pooh and his friends that uplifts the film. McGregor’s chemistry with Pooh is excellent and our famous bear character teaches us that a bear with a little brain is less important than a bear with a big heart. Our hearts is what should be of the utmost value in life and Pooh definitely has these attributes. Tigger and Eeyore definitely get their chance to shine as they still provide their catchphrases and personality that make all adults and children laugh. However, it is Winnie the Pooh and Christopher Robin that takes most of the limelight. They entertain us through a lot of slapstick humour and trade off sentimental dialogue to never forget your friends, never let go of the beautiful past and never grow up without having the right balance. Family, love and a little bit of work go a long way.

Aly Lalji | [rating=4]

Family, Adventure | UK, 2018 | PG | 16th August 2018 (UK) | Disney | Dir.Marc Forster | Ewan McGregor, Haley Atwell, Bronte Carmichael, Mark Gatiss, Jim Cummings, Toby Jones, Peter Capaldi