A Review of “JoJo Rabbit”

A comedy of the most serious proportions

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Maria Cima, Director of Podcasts

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In the past, Hollywood has made countless movies like The Boy in the Striped Pajamas and Schindler’s List that the lives of different people who were affected by WWII.   Many of these films are heart-wrenching, but JoJo Rabbit takes a new approach to informing the public about what it was like to live in Nazi Germany.

The movie begins with JoJo Betzler, played by Roman Griffin Davis, preparing to go to a weekend training camp for young children to learn about what it is like to be in the Nazi army run by an ex-war leader Captain Klenzendorf. While there, one of the older boys tells JoJo to break the neck of a rabbit to prove his willingness to do whatever they told them to. He tries but fails, knowing he is unable to take an innocent life, he is henceforth nicknamed JoJo Rabbit, to remind him of his cowardly ways. JoJo then tries to redeem himself by taking a hand grenade that the boys are learning how to use and throwing it into the woods. However, this backfires when the grenade hits a tree and blows up in JoJo’s face leaving him scared and slightly crippled in his leg, crushing his dreams of being in Hitler’s personal guard.

The movie however is not all laughs and smiles. There is an undertone of sorrow and heartbreak throughout the whole movie that becomes exemplified at the end.”

JoJo Rabbit, directed, written, and produced by Taika Waititi, who also starred in the film, hit theaters October 18, and with it came a story no one had thought to explore before: the story of a 10-year-old, fatherless, unpopular boy whose best friend is an imaginary Adolf Hitler and wants to be apart of a club. He is convinced that he is a Nazi and his ultimate goal in life is to be a part of Hitler’s personal guard, but one day he finds a Jewish girl hiding in his dead sister’s room. JoJo is forced to question everything he has been taught.

Waititi has been a part of extremely successful movies before JoJo Rabbit, so his success on this piece has not been a surprise, but the tone of the film is. Having worked on movies such as Moana, Thor: Ragnarok, and Avengers: Endgame in his repertoire, not many people were expecting a comedy about WWII to be his next project, but just like his movies in the past, this one is shaping up to be a hit. It has earned a 79% on Rotten Tomatoes, 3.5/4 from The Washington Post, and 3/5 from Common Sense Media.

The movie, however, is not all laughs and smiles. There is an undertone of sorrow and heartbreak throughout the whole movie that reaches a peak at the end. Just when everything seems like it is going to turn out okay for JoJo, the unexpected happens and I was left crying for the last 15 minutes of the movie.

Every year, there are movies that stir up a commotion in the media. last year it was Green Book, this year it was Joker and now JoJo Rabbit.

All in all, this movie is a must-see for anyone who wants to laugh, cry, or a gain new perspective on WWII. This movie has something in it for everyone.