Okay, I am just going to say it: Taika Waititi‘s Jojo Rabbit is one of the best films of the year. The anti-hate satire centers on a ten-year-old boy named Jojo (Roman Griffin Davis) who has some difficulties getting through Nazi camp, and the only person who can help him with his troubles is his imaginary friend, Adolf Hitler (Waititi). When he discovers that his mother (Scarlett Johansson) has been hiding a young Jewish girl (Thomasin McKenzie) in their attic, Jojo learns that everything he’s been told about the Jews may have been wrong.
Though the film is out in limited theaters now, Fox Searchlight has been releasing a series of clips and trailers after the film received critical acclaim from critics who viewed it at various film festivals. But this latest featurette is perhaps the best behind the scenes look at the film as it offers some insight from Waititi, as well as fellow co-stars Johansson, Sam Rockwell, and Stephen Merchant. Check out the video below.
Waititi (Thor: Ragnarok, What We Do In Shadows) makes it clear that though Jojo Rabbit takes place during World War II, it is seen from a child’s perspective. Though he has some trouble fitting in at the Nazi camp, the one person he can always rely on is his imaginary friend Adolf Hitler. This version of the irreverent figure is a buffoon. Furthermore, “because this version of Adolf comes from the mind of a ten-year-old, he can only know what a ten-year-old knows,” Waititi said.
“I think Taika has done a great job in taking something that on the surface seems so bleak, and inject it with humor and heart,” Merchant said.
There is a lot of that in the film. It’s funny, but also poignant. It can be humorous, yet so very tragic. Above all, it takes all of those concepts to remind us that we must learn to be more tolerant and spread more love and less hate.
Waititi says in the featurette:
“I wanted to make sure that it didn’t just seem like I was making a weird comedy amongst a really traumatic, violent, and tumultuous time period in history. It’s really easy to get caught up in this idea that you’re entertaining people with laughs and ridiculous moments. I just had to make sure that I wasn’t letting that get the better of the story and take over essentially what was the main message which is we need to be more tolerant, and spread more love and less hate.”
Jojo Rabbit also stars Rebel Wilson and Alfie Allen. It is out now in limited theaters, but will expand to more in the coming weeks.
Be sure to click right here for previously released trailers and more if you missed anything.