Language: Dutch w/ English subtitles
Live Action | 2012 | 81 min
Genre: Drama, Family
Recommended for ages 13+ (Parental Guidance: Challenging family situations, death)
Jojo, a lively 10-year-old with a difficult home life marked by a volatile father and an absent mother, finds solace in an abandoned baby jackdaw (“kauw” in Dutch). Through the special friendship he builds with the bird, the bond between Jojo and his father will be strengthened or broken. That it sometimes takes one death to accept another could be one of several messages this sensitive, but at times challenging, film has to offer.
“In a field dominated by many ambitious and weighty films, the Dutch submission for this year’s foreign language Oscar is appealing for its modesty… The film rests on the two splendid performances at the center. (JoJo) Rick Lens has to hold our attention for every minute of the film, a feat that he accomplishes effortlessly. The actor is completely convincing in his moments of joyous abandon as well as others of frustration and rage. He’s endearing without ever turning cloying, and this is surely a tribute to the skill of director Boudewijn Koole. Loek Peters is equally compelling as Jojo’s rather helpless father. The moments when Peters’ character responds to Jojo with brutality are disturbing, but we always understand the anguish that underlies the character’s anger.” – The Hollywood Reporter (12/7/12)