The BFG is a family fantasy film from 2016 directed by the legendary Steven Spielberg and based on the famous children’s book with the same name by Roald Dahl.
The BFG was one of my favorite books when I was very small, and I also love the animated British film adaptation of the book from 1989, so my expectations were..well, to be honest, I kind of expected to be disappointed. I feared that the screenplay had strayed too much from the original manuscript, and that the computerized special effects would spoil the magic of the story rather than add to it. But, to my great relief, I was pleasantly surprised.
The film shows a great attention to detail, the backdrops of the scenes are filled with little things to feast your eye on. The special effects, even though quite obviously computerized, are not exaggerated or done slobbishly. But the one who stole my heart in the film is the outstanding performance of little Ruby Barnhill who plays the orphaned Sophie, the heroine of the story. She makes the film beautifully charming and is the perfect little Sophie.
My favorite scenes are the Dream catching scene in Dream country and the breakfast scene with the queen in Buckingham Palace. Dream Country has been designed beautifully, both magical and mystical and very artistic. The breakfast with the queen is hilarious and has been given the time and necessary dialogue to create the same charming silliness as in the book.
Some critics have mentioned, adult critics, that nothing happens in the film and that it is dull. That is exactly what I love about it. I was afraid that the catching of the Giants would be made into this big violent action scene stealing the film completely, but it hasn’t. It has been allowed to stay as small and funny as Roald Dahl wrote it. The film is not dull, but the magic, artistry and charm win over the action, and that is exactly how it is supposed to be.
There are a few deviations from the book. Most of them are small and insignificant, and does not take anything away from the story, but, and this is a big but in my book, the ending is all wrong. Sophie is supposed to go and live with the the BFG! To me, that is the whole point, that she chooses a small life with the father figure she has come to love over a rich luxurious life with the queen. The ending gave me a bitter aftertaste, even though I still will say I loved the film.
So all in all, a big fat thumbs-up for The BFG. I highly recommend this movie to kids, families, and adults with a childlike mind and a big imagination (like me! 😄)
Image Credit: All the images are stills from the 2016 movie, The BFG