Film: Jojo Rabbit
Cast: Taika Waititi, Sam Rockwell, Scarlett Johansson, Rebel Wilson
Director: Taika Waititi
Taika Waititi’s new film Jojo Rabbit is an eloquent and beautifully acted adaptation of Christine Leunens’s bestselling novel Caging Skies. Essaying wacko Adolf Hitler, the film-maker exposes the evils of prejudice and hate and the malefic results of adherence to a Nationalism that demonizes minority groups. The titular protagonist (Roman Griffin Davis) is a 10-year-old member of the Hitler youth, who have been brainwashed with grandiose notions of Aryan superiority and contempt for the ‘other’ denizens of the Third Reich. The boy is given the titular nickname after his ‘cowardly’ inability to kill a rabbit.
Jojo’s special buddy is the Fuehrer (Waititi) who is happy-go-lucky friend, philosopher and dispenser of sound advice. Until he begins to rant and rave like one possessed. Brave is the apt word for Jojo’s mother, Rosie (Scarlett Johansson) Betzler, a warm hearted pacifist who is raising him alone as his father is in the army. JoJo finds his mother, has been hiding a feisty Jewish girl, Elsa (Thomasin McKenzie), in a false wall of his deceased sister, Inge’s bedroom. Waititi’s film mocks the genocidal Nazi ideology which led Germany, home of the world’s greatest musicians and philosophers, to The Abyss. Singular and riveting, JoJo Rabbit will leave viewers shell-shocked with heart-stopping dramatic moments and savage comedy.