Stars: Mark Rylance, Ruby Barnhill, Jemaine Clement, Penelope Wilton, Rebecca Hall, Bill Hader, Rafe Spall.
Director: Steven Spielberg
Screenplay: Melissa Mathison
Welcome back to Neverland, or rather Spielberg's magic that once created Neverland. From John Williams score, to the fart jokes it feels as though we have been sent through a portal back in time to when children films are as magical as they used to be.
The BFG from the mind of genius Roald Dahl is about a giant who catches dreams and mixes them together to create the dreamland for children and adults alike as they slumber. One of the nights the BFG (Big Friendly Giant, played by Mark Rylance) is going about the London streets, a little orphan girl is awake after 3am and sees a strange occurrence outside her orphanages window. Sofie (Ruby Barnhill) sees a giant hand pick up a fallen over rubbish bin then rushes back to her bed only to be taken through the window by said hand. Inside her blanket with her glasses and book she is whisked away by the giant to giant country.
The rest of the story is about Sophie and BFG forming an unlikely friendship. Sophie convinces him to take her on his adventures to collect, create, and release dreams.
The BFG is the runt of the litter in giant country—with only standing at a mere 24 feet—and so he is picked on by the other nine giants. Fleshlumpeater (Jemaine Clement) is the leader of the giants and all he likes to do is sleep, pick on BFG, and eat people. Sophie needs to hide every time the Fleshlumpeater is around otherwise she will become his snack. However, whenever she hides she hates to see BFG being picked on by the other giants and wants BFG to stand up for himself, thus giving her an unlikely plan to save people from a giant snack, and letting BFG simply live his life.
This movie is not the most amazing film in the world and by far not Spielberg's best, but it still is a little bit wonderful. The score from Williams is enough to make you feel the nostalgia of a highlight of Spielberg's 90's era films, Hook (1991) where anything is possible—with motifs of dollhouses, little rooms inside tree trunks, shadows on the walls creating stories, and travelling to a world not really connected to our own. The high contrast of colour even makes the blacks jump off the screen, the cobblestones of the London streets light up with the sprinkling of morning dew, and the BFG himself is quite a feet in CGI. This adaptation was even able to keep the fun of Dahl, with a farting Queen of England, using a pitchfork for cutlery, and snozzcumbers looking as gross as they sound.