It is freezing right now I’ll have you know. Winter. Cold. Brrr…❄ Ok, fine, no snow, but cold nonetheless. And I have to write about summer…how cruel. Hee hee…
But, nothing like a nice warm and fuzzy movie to add to some summer spirit. Let me present…The Way Way Back (2013). A lovely movie set during the summer holidays and to top it off, at a water park (to a degree).
Duncan, brilliantly played by Liam James, is a shy teenager who doesn’t really fit in, especially within the dynamics of his mother Pam (the ever brilliant Toni Collette), her new boyfriend Trent (Steve Carell) and his daughter. They all head off to Trent‘s beach house for a summer holiday. Trent constantly has a go at Duncan and more subtly at Pam, although she doesn’t notice it. During the course of the holiday, needing to keep busy as well as escape the adults, Duncan finds himself at Water Wizz, a local water park. Here he meets outgoing Owen (Sam Rockwell, awesome as usual) the park manager and other staff members. Although Owen seems to be a carefree and sometimes irresponsible adult, he knows exactly how to get Duncan to come out of his shell without being blatantly obvious. It is just beautiful watching Owen and Duncan‘s interaction, always with respect yet with just enough guidance from Owen. While there were some serious and sad moments (yet never heavy), I thoroughly enjoyed watching Duncan‘s growth and relationships with fellow Water Wizz staff, family (family-to-be) and neighbours.
As the summer progresses, so do the relationships (some regress). The ideal place for personal growth is often during those breaks away from the everyday routine. Summer holidays bring people out and therefore are perfect settings for finding friends, yourself and some fun.
Directed by Nat Faxon and Jim Rash, who also have small but great roles, The Way Way Back also stars Maya Rudolph, Amanda Peet, AnnaSophia Robb and Rob Corddry amongst others.
A fellow blogger once made a comment that “The Way Way Back is like a big hug in cinematic form”. Absolutely.