Title: Bridge to Terabithia
Play time: 1h 36min
Director: Gabor Csupo
Starring: Josh Hutcherson, AnnaSophia Robb, Zooey Deschanel
One of the best family films from the last decade, Bridge To Terabithia is a wonderful movie without a doubt. It was inspired by a book like many other family movies like Narnia and Harry Potter, yet this one is much more emotionally complex, hard to see, and incredibly engaging in many ways – from the acting to the directing and even the story by itself are designed to maintain the audience in front of the screen at all times.
The movie is based on Katherine Paterson’s novel for children which is called the same way. And even though it sounds like a fantasy book, it is more of a really tough and complex drama which talks about hard-to-ingest ideas about family, religion, social and economic class, relationships, loneliness, platonic love, and death. Simply, a movie that is much more difficult than it sounds like.
But the movie is overwhelming at best, even though it can be difficult to digest, the movie is not as hard as it could be and delivers a pretty good message. It talks about the relationship of two kids, Jess and Leslie, a girl who likes to build things and a boy who loves drawing. After they start meeting each other daily, they start to find out more things about each other’s lives, and from here on, the movie starts to show a complex drama that little by little gets better and better.
Bridge To Terabithia: A Friendship Story That Ends Unexpectedly
The movie, as said before, is about a girl and a boy friendship who are having the time of their short lives together, creating a pretty good friendship and spending their time using their imagination and true personalities to the max. The girl name was Leslie Burke played by AnnaSophia Robb. Leslie is a witty and very intelligent girl who loves to build things like houses and the like from trees. On the other hand, there’s Jess Aarons, a boy who loves drawing and who’s also very intelligent but who gets bullied in school due to being a little introverted and weird to the other kids, played by Josh Hutcherson.
They meet each other after Leslie’s family moves near Jess house and then they meet in the school bus. From here on, both kids start having a wonderful friendship that later on becomes a friendship full of wonderful games, where they even built their own magical land in the forest by themselves. They called this magical land “Terabithia”, and due to an increasing and unexpected imagination, the land becomes the home of incredible happenings, magical creatures, fictional characters and the most wonderful experiences they could’ve ever thought about.
Yet, their magical time doesn’t last long – as some time after they start getting in love with each other as the truest friendship demands, drama and fiction struck, and the fragility of the movie trumps everything else with a hard and unexpected happening that changes everything in the movie, making it go from a very lighthearted and funny story to a sad, very complex drama that is a heartbreaking as any other drama for adults.
After some time the friendship of these two kids starts growing, a horrendous accident happens to Leslie and she lost her life. This, as you would’ve thought, destroys Jess in almost every way possible, taking his only friend away from him, making him even more introverted than he already was, and even creating a sort of trauma for the time, something we can see easily in the movie where the boy demonstrates how heartbroken he felt when his only friend dies.
But the movie finds the best way to end and still send a sense of purpose, opportunity and happy thoughts. As it is a movie for the whole family, there’s no doubt how important it was to show that even in the hardest times, there’s always a way to keep going to matter what.
A Great Movie In Many Ways – ‘Bridge To Terabithia’
The emotional depth of this movie is far beyond any other movie in years. The way it engages people with the friendship of the two main gifted kids is wonderful, and how it ends up breaking the hearts of the audience is even better. But the movie finds a solution, the perfect way to tell the story that ends up being lighthearted and overall promising to see.
It was directed by Gabor Csupo, a director who captured the difference in the lives of the two main characters and still showed a wonderful friendship which delighted almost everyone from kids to parents easily. And the directing was not everything, the acting was superb as well. Especially from AnnaSophia Robb, we could see an over-the-top performance that warms the heart of everyone without a doubt. Zooey Deschanel as their teacher also gives a great performance. And, of course, Josh Hutcherson, gives his best performance of his childhood.
The movie is sentimental but doesn’t evoke traumatizing events. This way everyone would love seeing it, from parents to children without any problem. And as delicate as it is, as soon as it finishes you will feel incredibly inspired by a story where imagination overcomes the saddest stories. A movie every family should watch.