My daughter couldn't wait to see Christopher Robin. The trailer, showing a live action film with an adorable computer-generated Pooh Bear and friends, had her comparing it to the friendly Paddington franchise. My son thought it looked bleak.
Christopher Robin is feel-good, merging Pooh, Piglet, Eeyore and the gang into the live action seamlessly, often with slapstick and crazy antics.
It's also essentially a moving and uplifting story about a man having a mid-life crisis; my son was on to something, it's an odd combination of a child-like story mixed with complex adult themes.
We first meet A.A. Milne's characters in the Hundred Acre Wood as they gather to say goodbye to Christopher Robin, who's off to boarding school. Not long after, Robin is robbed of his childhood when his father dies, then spends his early adult life fighting in World War II.
AdvertisementAdvertise with NZME.
Now, with a wife and daughter, Christopher is focused purely on his job and making a future for his family, at the expense of spending time with them - until Pooh Bear shows up and helps him readjust his priorities.
It's a bit weird the way Pooh and friends are brought to life as animated soft toys and regarded as real, but Forster does a lovely job of expressing Pooh's unique philosophy on life. Pooh's saying "doing nothing often leads to the very best of something" gets quite a work-out, and feels relevant in this time of busyness as a competitive sport.
While I wouldn't recommend this to little ones, my 9-year-old loved Christopher Robin. A touch eerie at times, but like our outing to see The BFG, mum and daughter left the theatre feeling we'd seen something special.
Cast: Ewan McGregor, Hayley Atwell
Director: Marc Forster
Running Time: 104 mins
Verdict: Odd and wonderful all at once.