Wonder could pass as Disney channel special at its most cringe-worthy moments

Aside from the fact that it has 5 obvious points that the film should have ended on, and feels about as long as the entire Lord Of The Rings trilogy, Wonder, is not far from being the perfect family film. With charming stars, a great moral lesson, and a fair few funny moments, the endless runtime doesn’t seem quite so prolonged.

Auggie Pullman (Jacob Tremblay), very ill as a child, has scars and severe facial disfigurement as a result of multiple surgeries.  Homeschooled through most of his childhood, Auggie is getting ready to start real school. Scared for a fresh start, Auggie must face his fears as he meets new students, never forgetting his parents and sister are right behind him for support.

The family nature of the film gives a pleasing if a little cheesy outlook for most of the less intimate scenes. It even stems to a point where Wonder could pass as Disney channel special at its most cringe-worthy moments, but for the most part, this doesn’t hinder the films enjoyment value, perhaps because the Disney channel isn’t the worst place to go for family dramatics.

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Jacob Tremblay takes a quality turn as Auggie, not playing the sympathy card more than he needed to. Wonder could easily have turned into a ‘look how difficult life is for me’ story, but instead comes across mostly as one of resilience. This is also helped by the side stories, looking at how other characters deal with the difficulties they face because of Auggie’s disfigurement.

It’s a passionate film and one that gets its message across very cleanly. It’s far too long and has so many emotional moments that could have acted as the end scene Wonder actually has a certain bizarre quality to it. Yet, with strong acting and a joyous nature, there is certain pleasure to be found.

4/5

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