Okay Juicers, so I am doing this 30 day Film Challenge that should really give my thoughts and emotions an interesting time during the next month of quarantine. Day 22 is interesting because the question is to watch a movie that made you angry. I love movies so hardly any make me truly angry, however I remember watching this movie and thinking man thats a good movie but the end of the story pissed me off so much. That movie is Bridge to Terabithia.
*I will be spoiling everything
The life of Jesse (Josh Hutcherson), an adolescent, changes when he befriends Leslie (AnnaSophia Robb), the class outsider. The children create an imaginary world called Terabithia, which is inhabited by all manner of magical creatures. Though difficulties fill their ordinary lives, Jesse and Leslie rule as king and queen in Terabithia. Soon one of the friends must draw on the strength of their imaginary kingdom to cope with a tragedy.
“Just close your eyes, and keep your mind wide open”
I know everyone is wondering why this movie makes me angry because you are saying that is a kids movie. Well Juicers, no it is not. This movie has one of the dumbest twists I have ever seen, and sure it was a book beforehand, so I guess this story in itself has one of the dumbest twists ever. I never read the book as a kid which is kind of odd because I basically ready everything in this genre, so I was not prepared to see Leslie die. Oh wait sorry you do not even get to see it, or even see it coming because there is zero foreshadowing.
Let’s back up, Jess and Leslie meet at school, Jess is kind of an outcast with 3 sisters and Leslie is an excited new kid at school. They form a bond over an imaginary place in the forest they find call Terabithia. This part of the movie is great because it reminds me of using my imagination as a kid to get through the days. Jess is very artistic as well and forms a bond with his teacher (Zooey Deschanel), and she invites him on an outing to the museum (by himself…). It is weird and they decide not to invite Leslie, and then they come back and she is just dead?
I just invested my heart into these two and the writer just killed her off for no reason at all? What am I supposed to be learning here? And it just ruins great performances all around. Especially from AnnaSophia Robb and my guy Josh Hutcherson. Hutch has been in my life for so long now it feels like, all the way back to Little Manhattan (underrated as hell). He is great in his normal adventurous role and the two have great chemistry.
I also love the little sister Bailee Madison, she is adorable and how can you not enjoy her presence (she also crushes it in Grown Ups). And how can we not love seeing the big man Robert Patrick? Of course this isn’t T2 but I actually love the performance he is giving as the hard nosed Dad with a heart of gold. He is great and this is very different than what he usually does.
*A couple other tidbits
- The book author Katharine Peterson wrote the story because her sons best friend died from a lightning strike (this is extremely sad) but at least give us some foreshadowing in the story.
- The only Disney movie to feature a permanent death of a child.
- There is hardly any fantasy in this movie at all.
This is a well made movie and the acting is great, I just have a really hard time getting through this story. There is not nearly as much fantasy as you would think, and that death just comes out of nowhere. Years later this movie still makes me mad.
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