Friday, March 9, 2018

TIFF Kids '18 Film Review - The Giant Pear

Solby is the best town in the world because the sun always shines and the inhabitants are all really happy.  The beloved mayor J.B. is open and available to the community not wanting to make any changes that would affect the well being of the town. His only annoyance is vice mayor Twig who wants to erect a grand  town hall grand that would block out the sun casting a shadow over the town. Mayor J.B. disappears one day without a trace until a bottle turns up caught by his friends Sebastian and Mitcho along with a seed that turns into a giant pear.  The pair along with local scientist Professor Glykose of the Atomic Institute head out in the pear turned  houseboat to find J.B. who is marooned on the Mysterious Island.

Directors Philip Einstein Lipski, Amalie Naesby Flick and Jorgen Lerdam craft a tale that teaches children not to believe or act on rumors but to go out and seek the facts. As the trio start their journey they have many fears. Sebastian cannot swim and is generally afraid of everything, Mitcho is a cat that hates the water. On their path to the island legend has it they will be faced with Pirates, a Sea Dragon and the Pitch Black Sea. What they find when they come face to face with these obstacles they are all not as advertised.

The art department create a bright and colourful world that will mystify and delight their the films target audience. Solby is dotted by unique buildings, winding roads and green spaces. Humans live alongside animals all interacting in their daily lives. Best illustrated by our young elephant hero Sebestian alongside Mitchco a cat who go on an adventure to rescue a human mayor J.B. alongside another one Professor Glykose.

The Giant Pear is an adventure story that will captivate its intended audience of 4-7 year olds. The directors have some messages that are also valuable for children beyond the demographic. Themes like look within to find another way of achieving a difficult goal and don't fall victim to preconceived notions are beneficial. Sebastian grows from a mindset of fear and timidness to one where he is willing to take on a challenge with satisfying results. I'm not too fond of the small man stereotype of Vice Mayor Twig but overall it's a piece producing several positive lesson for the viewer.

*** Out of 4.

The Gian Pear | Philip Einstein Lipski / Amalie Naesby Flick / Jorgen Lerdam | Denmark | 2017 | 79 Minutes.

Tags: Message in a Bottle, Juicy Pear, Pirates, Sea Dragon, Town Hall, Disappearance, Watermelon, Dragon's Dip, Yatzee.

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