Film review: Boyhood


I was lucky enough, with hundreds of others, to watch the movie Boyhood at the Civic in Auckland on the weekend. The Civic has a capacity of 2378. The show was sold out.

Richard Linklater’s cinematic journey about a young boy growing up took 12 years to make with the same cast.

We get to grow up with young Mason (Ellar Coltrane), watch him transition from boy to teenager to college student while accompanied by his mother (Patricia Arquette), sister and father (Ethan Hawke).

We see how a young boy is influenced by his parents’ choices, his mother’s husband and those of his father’s new family. Moving constantly, the only thing that stays the same in his life is his family.

The movie cleverly incorporates pop culture references including politics, music and technology that change as Mason is growing up. I often didn’t realise the story had moved forward by a year or two.

The cast performs amazingly well and the story flows seamlessly. Along with everyone else I gasped and hid behind my fingers as Mason and his friends did predictably stupid teenage boy stunts.

I also joined all my fellow cinema goes in giving the movie a resounding round of applause when the credits finally rolled 164 minutes later.

Kudos to the director and cast for the commitment and effort it took to make this beautiful movie.

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