Written By: Melissa Mathison
Directed By: Steven Spielberg
Studio: Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures
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The BFG is an adventurous Spielberg movie based on the Roald Dahl book of the same name. It’s a really good movie but unfortunately, no one really knows that since it was a box office disappointment. At first, I was skeptical that this movie would be decent but I ended up liking it a lot!
The movie centers around Sophie (Ruby Barnhill), a 10 year old orphan who has insomnia most nights. In the middle of the night, she hears a noise and looks outside to see a giant in the streets. The giant captures her and takes her to Giants Country. The BFG or Big Friendly Giant (Mark Rylance) doesn’t want her to give away that giants exist so he wants her to stay there for their entire lives. Sophie finds out that BFG is a nice giant, a dream catcher and can control dreams but there are other giants as well. There’s a bunch of man-eating giants like the Fleshlumpeater (Jemaine Clement) and the Bloodbottler (Bill Hader) that are a lot bigger than BFG, who discover that Sophie is in their land and set out to get her and other children.
It’s a shame people didn’t see The BFG because it was a good movie. I think Disney marketed the movie wrong and released it in the Summer. Even though it’s a Steven Spielberg movie, this doesn’t scream big action blockbuster fluff you see in July. This type of magical, adventurous movie would have been suited for a fall release. November or December would have been perfect ala Harry Potter or Lord of the Rings. It isn’t like those movies but it feels right being released then instead of the Summer. But it’s over and done with now. I’m sure once word of mouth goes around, more people will see this.
I thought the special effects were simply amazing and realistic. The motion capture stuff really makes the movie believable. If the effects were subpar, this wouldn’t have worked at all. I absolutely loved the part where the BFG was hiding from people in London in the beginning of the movie. They did that so well. You also need a good story, which you’ll get from Roald Dahl and a screenplay from the late Melissa Mathison. The score from John Williams makes the movie ten times better and he created a whimsical, magical feel to it like JW did for Harry Potter. I didn’t notice the score when I listened to it before seeing the movie but I want to listen to it now. Can’t forget to mention Spielberg, who just has a knack for making a beloved story into an interesting and fun movie. He manages just the right balance of comedy, adventure, and all that stuff.
Mark Rylance as The BFG was perfect in my opinion. He had all the lexicon and mannerisms down pat and did an excellent job. Sophie was adorable as well and sort of reminded me of Georgie Henley as Lucy Pevensie in The Chronicles of Narnia. Jemaine Clement, Bill Hader and others were funny as the man-eating giants. I didn’t even know Bill Hader was in the movie until I saw the end credits. Besides the scene in the beginning with the BFG hiding from people, and fleeing back to Giants Country, I also loved the scene with the Queen and everybody “whizzpopping.” Hooray for fart jokes that are funny!
The special features include a behind the scenes look, the words of BFG, a tribute to the late Melissa Mathison, a featurette on giants acting out on the motion capture stage in those funny looking gray suits with the dots on them. I liked watching the almost half hour featurette and all the giants goofing around on the mo cap stage. The tribute to Melissa Mathison was sweet too.
The BFG would have done better at the box office if it was released now instead of the Summer. Just because something fails at the box office doesn’t mean it’s a bad movie, because the BFG is a very good movie! It’s cute, entertaining and I could myself watching this a lot of times over the years.
Bringing The BFG to Life
The Big Friendly Giant and Me
Gobblefunk: The Wonderful Words of The BFG
Melissa Mathison: A Tribute
English DTS-HD MA 5.1
French DTS-HD MA 5.1
Spanish DTS-HD MA 5.1
Widescreen 2.39:1 Color
Bottom Line: A fun film that deserved better at the box office
Running Time: 118 mins