parley78’s review published on Letterboxd:
I know I have too many five stars and I consider too many films "perfect" but I am so lucky to be able to see so many good movies. I'm constantly being blown away by watching and just thinking about films that I struggle finding a flaw with. This is one of them.
It tells a bold story, one that can't have been easy to write. There is so many elements and and twists and symbols and whatnot in this movie. Yet somehow Taika and company have all their bases covered. Every single aspect is perfectly tackled here. It's funny. It's sad. It's a coming of age. It's a family drama. It deals with war. It does it all.
This is one of the funniest movies i've ever seen. This takes dark and dry comedy and turns it up to eleven. Roman Griffin Davis delivers one of the funniest performances of the year. He is perfectly naive and somehow still thoughtful and delivers a fully fleshed out performance. Taika Waititi is so good at finding the perfect comedic timing and nailing every insane character he plays that he even makes ADOLF HITLER the perfect comic relief. Sam Rockwell always delivers and is very very good as the insane Captain K. And the rest of the supporting cast delivers with Rebel Wilson, Stephen Merchant, and Archie Yates. The comedy hits 100% of the time.
But while we're on the topic of cast, I want to discuss two of the more dramatic (while still funny at times) performances and characters. First Scarlett Johansson, who plays Jojo's mother, Rosie, and Thomasin McKenzie, who plays Elsa, the jew that Rosie is hiding in her home.
These characters work perfectly. They both wonderfully compliment Jojo and his emotions and social stance, while working well with each other. Their relationship is tear jerking and powerful. On one side, you see Elsa, the jew, trying to survive in any way she can. And on the other hand, you get Rosie. Rosie is trying to do what she thinks is right, and what she believes in, while still trying to keep with societal norms and protect her son by any means necessary. Having these two characters have the same goal, while be on opposite sides of society perfectly sets up any conflict, especially within our protagonist, Jojo. Some of the best dramatic scenes in the film were shared between these two.
The film goes through so many tonal shifts. This was my third viewing, so I was expecting it, but i watched this with two other people that hadn't seen it, and they were blown away with how easy it was for the film to seamlessly flow through emotions, tones, and subject matter. One second you're laughing so hard you're crying, the next second you're just plain crying. The symbolism is so rich, and makes everything that much more emotional, especially because this movie flawlessly humanizes its characters and setting, and somehow makes you root for Nazis.
So yeah, Jojo Rabbit. Incredible, probably flawless film. I haven't seen Parasite (i know, i know), so i'm gonna go ahead and say this is the best film of 2019. It's gonna be hard to top. God bless Taika Waititi, and I can't wait to see more from him. Now go watch Two Cars, One Night.
EDIT: Oh yeah, and the soundtrack is phenomenal