Tuesday, June 26, 2007
About A Boy Review
About A Boy is a daring comedy that strikes at the heart of all people. Meet Will, a selfish shallow 38 year-old man who is "an island" surround by his cool stuff. Meet Markus, a geeky socially inept and isolated 12 year-old boy. By the attempted suicide of Markus' mother Will and Markus are thrown together. Comedy most certainly ensues.
Will has attempted to preserve his life in isolation. He has all that he needs, DVDs, CDs, casual relationships with women and the like. His philosophy in life is: if people can make you happy then they most certainly can make you unhappy. So Will chooses to be an "island" with no real interaction with people. Yet, because of this Will in a sense becomes un-human. It is only through the spending of time (unwillingly at first) with Markus that Will becomes 'human' again. This first occurs during the time that they both are watching Xena and Will asks "How's your mother?" It is his first attempt in the movie to be interested in the needs of another person.
Markus on the other hand, needs more of a emotional support. He is terrified of what would happen if his mother committs suicide again. So he seeks out Will. In doing this Will teaches Markus about individualism and identity. Both of the characters grow, Markus to discovery of identity and Will to discovery of community.
As Christians we need to have both! We have an identity that is not lost: saint and sinner at the same time. At times we want to be an "island". Our sinful nature seeks out isolation, self-centeredness, and 'shallow'-ness. Yet as a saint, saved by the sacrifice of Jesus Christ, we are called to a community, not just a community but a family. As a Christian we can never be truly alone because our Jesus is always with us. "I am with you always...". Certainly there are times that we do need to be alone. But these times are when we draw upon the Word of God to refresh us and send us back out into the world. Our purpose in life is to "love your neighbor". Now that could be your family, friends, neighbors or anyone. We are to seek the needs of others. About A Boy draws upon the concept that there needs to be community in order to be human and that our purpose is to help others.
This movie is rated PG-13. It has some strong language but is quite an excellent film.