Taika Waititi offer a hilarious perspective on the insanity of Nazism in this brazen, boisterous comedy.
Creating a World War II-set comedy-drama that counts on drawing laughs from one of history’s greatest monsters is a big sell, even for Waititi, a filmmaker whose deadpan New Zealand wit has given us everything from vampire mockumentary What We Do In The Shadows to the coming-of-age territory he explored in Boy and Hunt For The Wilderpeople.
His first war movie and only period piece, focuses on ten-year-old German boy Johannes ‘Jojo’ Betzler (Roman Griffin Davis). He has grown up in Nazi Germany idolising Adolf Hitler but when he discovers his mother is harbouring Jewish girl Elsa (Thomasin McKenzie) in their home, his outlook begins to change, much to the dismay of his Führer-shaped imaginary friend.
The two standout young actors are worth the price of admission alone with both McKenzie and Davis providing the kind of heart you may not come to expect from such a set-up. Looking at how impressionable youth can be so easily manipulated, Jojo Rabbit shows us that prejudice and hate are not behaviours born of the soul, but ideologies and beliefs indoctrinated into us by others. (Research Chris Coetsee) Fantastic. Come for Chris’s last line, alone…