Written by Hader Hisham
There’s no denying that ‘Boyhood’ (2014) is a quietly gorgeous film that lets us feel stuff many movies try to reach but few celebrate so thrillingly: the sweetness and pain of family life, the joy of the now, the evolving wonder of personhood. ‘Boyhood’ is both a nostalgic time capsule of the recent past and an ode to growing up and parenting. The movie follows the life of Mason from early childhood to his arrival at college. Written and directed by the outstanding filmmaker Richard Linklater, previously known for the Before Trilogy (Before Sunrise, Before Sunset, and Before Midnight). Starring Ellar Coltrane, Patricia Arquette, Ethan Hawke, and Lorelei Linklater.
- The movie actually was shot over a period of 12 years! The crew would meet every year during that period for only 45 days of shooting and none of the actors were contractually obligated to return to the film each year as it’s illegal to contract employees for more than 7 years. Richard Linklater stated in his will that if he died during the 12-year shooting, Ethan Hawke would have taken over the directorial duties.
- The fact that the viewer can literally watch the characters as they grow on screen. Ellar Coltrane, who plays the boy in the title, was 7 years old when the movie started filming and 19 when it finished.
- According to Patricia Arquette, who plays the mother in the movie, Richard Linklater asked her not to have any plastic surgeries during the years of shooting since it wouldn’t make sense for her character. In a time when the movie industry is full of actors who had at least one plastic surgery, this dedication is what brought Patricia Arquette’s first Oscar win for a supporting role.
- Despite directing his movie ‘Interstellar’ which was released in the same year, the legendary filmmaker Christopher Nolan revealed that ‘Boyhood’ is his favorite movie of 2014. Notably, Nolan is known for ‘The Dark Knight’ trilogy and holds 3 Oscars, Golden Globes, and BAFTAs nominations.
- The movie is included among the “1001 Movies You Must See Before You Die”: a film reference book edited by Steven Schneider with original essays on each film contributed by over 70 globally acclaimed film critics.
- Boyhood is one of only 11 movies to receive a Metascore of 100, the highest possible score that can be attained from professional movie critics on the review aggregate Metacritic, and so far the only film to receive this score upon its original release.
‘Boyhood’ is undoubtedly a must-watch. It’s both nostalgic and overwhelming, especially for people born in the 80s and 90s.