RELEASE DATE: November 8, 2019
MPAA RATING: PG-13 (for mature thematic content, some disturbing images, violence, and language)
With Jojo Rabbit, writer/director/actor Taika Waititi (Thor: Ragnarok) brings us a World War II satire filled with scenes of humor, which are immediately juxtaposed with frequent cinematic slaps in the face that stuns one back to the realities of war, hatred, and racism.
The story centers around a 10-year-old German boy named Jojo (Roman Griffin Davis) whose unfaltering allegiance to his homeland is fueled by seriocomic interactions he has with his imaginary friend Adolf Hitler (Taika Waititi). When Jojo learns that his mother (Scarlett Johansson) is hiding a young Jewish girl (Thomasin McKenzie) in the attic of their home, he is torn between his developing affection for the girl and his wanting to be a German loyalist.
All the performances are solid, including a nice supporting turn by Sam Rockwell. As the title character, young Davis is essentially in every scene of this film delivering a wonderfully convincing, sympathetic, and ultimately heartbreaking performance.
This film is not for everyone’s tastes, to be sure, but in its own way it says volumes about the potential atrocities which may result from blind loyalty.