Movie Review: The BFG... Yawn!

The BFG is a feel good movie in the Spielberg tradition. The opening shots in an orphanage pull you in as do the cinematography and clever, well paced- editing. This is a film for children and bigger children and is about fearlessness and bravery. No hanky panky. No four letter words only fantastic dialogue that continues as the writer makes up words as he sails trippingly on a giant's tongue into a child's fantasy. Your ear will be tested and then again as Roald Dahl's description is over the top and then some.

The BFG is about a little girl, Ruby Barnhill, who is kidnapped from an orphanage by a giant, Mark Rylance, and she soon realizes he is a friendly giant who wants to protect her and care for her. He collects dreams and together they go on a journey to gather outrageous dreams. Saccahrin sweet it is at times but mostly it is fun and visually four stars.

The CGI is worked effectively as one would expect from Mr.Spielberg, but The BFG is a too long. Yawns set in towards the end as I thought I'd seen one place for an early exit, but on it went to the queen played by a terrific Penelope Wilton and back to the land of the giants who devour children. Bill Hader plays one of the bigger giants, but his fine performance did not keep me from feeling that I had been gianted out. But we had to go back for more like a sledgehammer. Well, the film is sweet and precious and all that, if long in the tooth ...wink wink. Enfin, The BFG is in love with itself and Mr. Spielberg.

I remember in my friendship with Norman Mailer how he despised ET and Mr. Spielberg's obsession with sweetness. As I watched the film, I thought Mr Mailer may have had a point still I prefer The BFG to Mr. Mailer's finding pleasure in decapitating a woman which he did pre -Isis in his one and only major motion picture directorial stint in Tough Guys Don't Dance.

If you have a child and want to entertain her/him, do take in The BFG, but otherwise, skip it.