Movie Review: Wonder
Based on the best-selling novel from 2012, Wonder came to theaters this November, and it brought the touching storyline from the book to a whole new level.
The movie follows the life of fifth-grader August Pullman, played by Jacob Tremblay, who was born with craniofacial abnormalities. After being homeschooled all his life due to constant trips to the hospital for surgeries, his parents, played by Julia Roberts and Owen Wilson, decided middle school would be the perfect time for him to enter a traditional school. They send him to Beecher Prep where Auggie faces bullying and isolation but also true friendship and new adventures he would not have been exposed to in homeschool. He meets his best friend, Jack Will, played by Noah Jupe, and also his worst enemy, Julian, played by Bryce Gheisar. Watching him navigate through middle school will make you cry and laugh as it is heartbreaking and inspirational at the same time.
Just as in the book, the movie shows the multiple perspectives author R.J. Palacio wrote in, and the film moves from character to character just as the book’s chapters progress. Auggie’s older sister, Via, played by Izabela Vidovic, shares a similarly moving story dealing with family tensions, shifting friendships, and starting high school. She often feels her parents forget about her and revolve around Auggie. She explained, “August is the Sun. Me and Mom and Dad are planets orbiting the Sun.” With frustrations like this and other teen experiences, Via’s story is relatable and adds great depth to the film.
Auggie’s best friend Jack Will’s perspective drives a lot of the plot and truly aids in bringing about the major messages from the movie as a whole. Kindness is a major theme, and Wonder encourages everyone to remember that a person’s character is what truly matters. As the movie continuously stresses, Auggie is the same as every other kid, he just looks a little different.
My overall opinion of the movie is that it is a must-see for everyone. It appeals to every age and is a great reminder of the type of people we should all aim to be: kind. Out of five stars, I would rate Wonder a four and a half stars, simply because I thought the book was better due to many additional details it provided. If you have read the book, that makes watching Wonder even more special since you can compare what you pictured while reading to the film production. The movie also featured specific quotes from the book, which I thought was a fantastic inclusion. A genuinely stunning movie, Wonder will bring a new perspective to your life just as the movie shares many perspectives with you.