By Fred Topel | Image property of respective holders
Flipped is the family movie I’ve been waiting my whole life for. You know I hate those dysfunctional family dramedies where they glorify people being mean to each other, then have a very special moment. Flipped has the family values I dream of having one day.
The dual points of view slowly reveals the vastly different perspectives two people can have on the same event. That’s old hat for cinema, but it’s vitally important for kids to learn at a young age. Frankly, it’s important for adults to be reminded of as often as possible.
It’s hopeful about people learning values, and learning that the world is bigger than just yourself. There are whole stories the boy doesn’t know about the girl’s life. His parents are real A-holes too. You see where he gets it. It’s amazing he’s even charming at all. Give him time to end up like his dad. Her family communicates, supports each other and lets the kids grow. The A-holes are shown for what they are. Yes, it’s funny too. It’s got a light touch. This is just what I see in it.
I do feel the multiple perspectives works a whole lot better with kids than with grown-ups. Here, the limitations of childhood give kids selfish perspectives until they learn the whole story and grow from it. When Harry and Sally see things differently, they’re just being immature. I would buy a public orgasm more in <B>Flipped</b> but they decided not to go there.
The children’s love story is really sweet, with a knowing irony so they can get away with it. It actually gets more adorable as the kids get older. I still want a girl who hold hands, runs after me and hugs me in public. Don’t you brats know a good thing when you have one?
It’s shot with a childlike wonder at simple nature and friends and love. Just the angels and the movement of the frame suggests a kid looking up at the world. The story and subplots are all intimate incidents like a tree, some eggs and a lawn. They find high drama over the little things.
The old time setting works just because it’s nice to hear Doo Wop music, see slick hair, people dressed nicely, shiny cars and well kempt neighborhoods. I also thought maybe the period setting gets adult viewers out of their modern element enough to see the film with the innocence of a child again. And they can say “retard” because that’s what they said in the ‘60s.
The narration tries a little too hard to be literary, with metaphors I don’t believe even ‘60s kids would say. Let’s hope the worst thing a movie ever does is be too artistic. The Three Stooges banter and period pop culture references may be a little forced but I’ll buy that as filler to get to the actual point of the scene.
Flipped could be one of the great films. I mean one of THE great films. I wish I could have seen it when I was a kid, before I learned everything the hard way. I’ll take my adult perspective though.