So, I’ve been ill and haven’t really been able to give this review the attention I would like, but since it’s already a day late, here goes nothing.
If Wes Anderson got really high and was held at gunpoint by the Australian mafia to create a film inspired by Pan’s Labyrinth, Jim Henson’s Labyrinth, and Alice in Wonderland, Girl Asleep might be the result. With a 6.5 IMDB rating and 82% fresh rating from Rotten Tomatoes, this is bound to be an odd adventure (53% audience vote).
If anyone is interested in my experience of watching Girl Asleep, click here to see my notes.
This review will consist of me asking myself 10 questions and answering them to the best of my ability.
1. What is this film about?
14-year-old Greta is new at school and very shy. She’s also turning 15 in a few days and her oddball family thinks a big party is just what she needs. Too bad she hates the idea.
2. What did I think of the title, poster, and or trailer?
I literally discovered this film surfing through Netflix and knew absolutely nothing about it ahead of time. The poster of the two kids in their school uniforms seemed interesting to me. Plus I wanted to try something different, and this certainly looked different.
3. What did I think of the main character(s) and how the actors performed them?
Everything about this movie was odd. With that being considered, it was difficult deciding whether the actors were performing their roles well or not. I’m only vaguely familiar with the work of Bethany Whitmore, who plays Greta, but as child actresses go, I think she did a fine job with the odd material.
4. What did I think of the direction and cinematography?
I’m not sure how I feel about the direction of this film. As I mentioned before, I got the sense that Wes Anderson might have been an influence but so might have Tim Burton and Jim Henson. I didn’t really get it. Sometimes it seemed like close-ups were the focus, but then a wide-angle scene with one individual in the shot would come up next. I’m not even going to try to understand the use of stop-animation at one point.
5. What did I think of the soundtrack and score?
This movie takes place in the 70s, so of course, the music is fun. Even with tunes I don’t clearly recognize, the music helped ease the oddness. That is until an unnecessary musical number broke out, more than once… Yeah.
6. What did I like about the story as a whole?
Well, I guess the anti-bullying and self-acceptance message is a good point to drive home, so… that was good. I did actually like the end where…SPOILER… Greta puts on her friend’s suit and he puts on her dress to prove a point.
7. What did I not like about the story?
So much. It’s difficult to pinpoint one thing.
8. Would I recommend this movie to others and what would I rate this movie?
The moral of the story seems to be that being a teenager sucks. I’m still not quite sure why the critics liked it so much. I honestly don’t think this is the worst movie I’ve ever seen. It’s not that bad. It’s just really not good, to me.
On a scale of 1 to 5 movie reels, I give this film 2 reels.
P.S. This should really be a 1 reel rating. I discovered a glitch in my rating system for works I “Didn’t Like” or “Didn’t Finish”. I will leave all previous ratings as they are but will apply adjustments for all future book and movie reviews.
9. Is there anything I would have changed or done differently?
Perhaps it’s simply a cultural difference, but I wouldn’t have made the people seem so sitcom-like. They just didn’t feel the slightest bit real. I also probably wouldn’t have had the kids curse so much. Kids cursing in movies has its place, but hear it just seemed like too much.
10. Was there anything in this movie that could be related to me or anything I have written?
In this movie, Greta takes a trip, I mean that in the “puff, puff, pass” sense (if you don’t get that reference, don’t spend too much time thinking about it). It’s supposed to be a dream, I think, but it quickly becomes a nightmare. It’s like many other films where reality and the dream world collide. I often write stories where that happens, especially in my Eternal Curse Series.
Watch, rent, or buy this movie here.
Thank you for taking the time to read this post. If you like it let me know and share it with others. See you next time, Toi Thomas. #thetoiboxofwords