Léon is ten years old, has lots of problems and an overly fertile imagination. Of course, there is mom and dad who are always fighting, and those annoying neighbors who get to spend the ... See full summary »
Based on the true childhood experiences of Noah Baumbach and his brother, The Squid and the Whale tells the touching story of two young boys dealing with their parents' divorce in Brooklyn in the 1980s.
Léon is ten years old, has lots of problems and an overly fertile imagination. Of course, there is mom and dad who are always fighting, and those annoying neighbors who get to spend the summer at the beach. And then, there's Léa, the exasperating girl who's always right about everything. In the summer of '68, when mom decides to leave everything behind to start a new life in Greece, Léon is prepared to do anything to kill the pain. Destroy the neighbors' house, become a professional liar and even, why not, fall in love with Léa. Together, they will overcome the pain of growing up when you feel abandoned. Written by
I'm used to dying from time to time. Like that time I slept in the pool. Under the water, it's quiet, like before I was born. Mom disagreed.She saved me, then killed the pool with a knife.
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This movie has just won the 'Silver Bear' award at the Berlin Film Festival in the 'Generation' section. The award is well deserved. The charismatic young lead actor who terrorises his neighbours and family carries the film on his slight shoulders. It is cleverly structured with laughter and tears throughout. The dialogue is sharp and witty and the characters well drawn. On a more serious note the film highlights the severe problems disturbed youngsters left to their own devices can have. Another reviewer compared it to 'Home Alone' but it is much deeper and (with a suicide attempt) far darker than the American comedy. Filmed in Canada with French dialogue it deserves to be seen by a much wider audience. Strongly recommended!
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