I went to the October 10th premiere of the movie in Austin with my two sons. We had been waiting for what seemed an eternity for it to finally be released. It still isn't, but at least we got to see it.
The movie is very good. There are several changes from the book, most obvious being the modern setting instead of the 1970s. That change didn't hurt the story in any way. Another noticeable change in my opinion was the shifting of emphasis on the subplots. Don't get me wrong, they were all there. Some were simply less important or more important in the movie than they were in the book. Once again, that didn't seem to hurt the story.
The movie was well cast. The important characters were very nicely realized. The children in the movie are a very talented group. I especially enjoyed the portrayal of Cal.
I would like to see the movie again in a regular movie theater. There were moments when the picture got a little blurry, but I honestly believe that it was the projector at the Paramount. You could see that someone was trying to keep it focused. Just the same, the actual camera work on the movie was awesome. Everything has a vitality of realism that made me feel like I was standing there watching the story unfold.
My favorite scene of the movie was when Toby's anger over Cal's brother's death, Zachary Beaver's heartbreak at feeling he has been blown off by his new friends, and the funeral were all woven together. I sat in my seat sobbing with the characters. It was so very well filmed. I never cry at movies. This one got me.
I hope this film gets a distributor. I want to see it again.
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