<Review by: Sailesh Ghelani>

Directed by Taika Waititi. Starring Roman Griffin Davis, Taika Waititi, Scarlett Johansson, Thomasin McKenzie, Sam Rockwell, Rebel Wilson, Stephen Merchant, Alfie Allen

Running time: 1 hour 50 mins

The trailer looked cute and funny and the concept seemed different. This is dark humour done well considering it’s a topic that most people wouldn’t want to look at in a comedic way.

Being of Maori and Russian Jewish decent, Waititi’s unique sense of humour took him to write and direct this little gem of a movie that makes you laugh, touches your heart and even gets you to cry. It takes a dig at the Nazis and the bizarre policies that existed at the time that got kids to take part in military training and indoctrination into the cult of Hitler. One kid, Johan ‘Jojo’ Betzler (Roman Griffin Davis) is totally immersed into his uniform and duty, even having an imaginary friend who looks like Adolf Hitler, but one would imagine probably behaves more like the fantasy Jojo has in his head of what the man would be like.

His mother (Scarlett Johansson) is supportive of the boy – with little choice – but has her little secret that Jojo soon discovers hiding in the attic: a young Jewish girl called Elsa (Thomasin McKenzie). The two face off as Jojo draws pictures of Jews with horns in his diary and asks her to tell him more about the ‘beastly race’ for his book. She plays along and soon the two become more than just verbal adversaries.

Pathos and punchlines get along far better in Jojo Rabbit than the Nazis and the Jews but there is also some heart and depth in most of the characters that lifts them up beyond being caricatures.

It’s a lovely little film that will warm your heart and make you smile.

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