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A Monster Calls

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A Monster Calls 2016 12

108 mins Great Britain Director. J.A. Bayona

Shooting from the spectacular heights of fantasy, straight to the beating heart of reality, A Monster Calls is a genuinely moving film of great wonder and beauty, directed by JA Bayona (The Impossible, The Orphanage) and based on the hugely popular book by Patrick Ness. 12-year-old Conor (Lewis MacDougall is extraordinary) is bullied by his classmates because he sees the world differently. His mother (Felicity Jones), with whom he has a very special bond, is suffering from a terminal illness. His bossy grandmother (Sigourney Weaver) has become increasingly controlling. And his unreliable father (Toby Kebbell) is perpetually absent. Suddenly, a wizened and mysterious yew tree materialises to provide Conor with some much-needed guidance (Liam Neeson’s voice is the perfect combination of melodic and imposing).

Bayona’s visually inventive filmmaking gives glorious form to this deeply moving story about a boy who draws on his expansive imagination to come to terms with impending loss. He brings together members of the award-winning creative team that worked on Pan’s Labyrinth and the film’s level of technical creativity is a sight to behold. The film is abundant with cinematic references, such as the scene where mother and son watch the original King Kong, a model precedent for the animatronics and performance capture that bring to life this film’s profoundly human monster.

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Directed by

J.A. Bayona

Featuring

Lewis MacDougall

Liam Neeson

Sigourney Weaver

Felicity Jones

Toby Kebbell

Collection

Family Films BFI London Film Festival Presents

Certificate

12 moderate threat, scenes of emotional distress

Released

2016

Country

Great Britain

Language

English

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