A rare glimpse into the relationship between beloved children's author A. A. Milne (Domhnall Gleeson) and his son Christopher Robin, whose toys inspired the magical world of Winnie the Pooh. Along with his mother Daphne (Margot Robbie), and his nanny Olive, Christopher Robin and his family are swept up in the international success of the books; the enchanting tales bringing hope and comfort to England after the First World War. But with the eyes of the world on Christopher Robin, what will the cost be to the family? Written by
Fox Searchlight Pictures
When Christopher Robin visits London Zoo (in 1928), he watches penguins swimming past a viewing dome set into the side of their enclosure, known as Penguin Beach. This wasn't built until 2011. See more »
You'll pull the book out of the attic after seeing this lovely biopic.
Not having any serious connection with Pooh, Tigger, Piglet and the rest of the children's story, Winnie the Pooh, I am perhaps even more ready than its devotees to admire Goodbye Christopher Robin. It's a biopic of great sensitivity that mixes nostalgia for the most popular children's book ever with the harshness of two world wars and the practice of parents leaving their children with nannies in the first quarter of the 20th century.
I now wish I had a stronger relationship with those little critters and that lovable boy, for I could have used the distraction from the aftermath of WWII just as Pooh was able to do for the world after the war to end all wars. Author A.A. Milne (a stoic and yet lovable Domhnall Gleeson) was traumatized by his service in the war, and moved slowly to erase that PTSD while creating Pooh. The film spends too much time on his trauma, but it does help fill out Milne's character.
Yet, this is the story of Billy Moon (a remarkably-dimpled, serene Will Tilston), as Christopher Robin is called in real life, who supplies his dad with inspirations for the book. The film centers on remote dad's growing love for the boy and the book while remote mom goes off to London to do who knows what. The film carefully shows how children might be lucky to have a nanny like Neu (Kelly Macdonald) to give them love and some creative inspiration along the way.
Goodbye Christopher Robin is a successful biopic because it doesn't spare the story of anti-helicopter parents who endanger the mental health of their children with their absences. As fame overtakes the Milne family, the film still relays the sense of wonderment Billy had as a child immersed in love of his forest, animals, and imagination.
The biopic may be counter to what we expected of a world-renowned author of a book for children. That he had difficulty initially interacting with his own child is unusual, but the film is successful showing how he warms up and creates a masterpiece as well.
Though not always a feel good movie, Goodbye Christopher Robin makes you wish he'd never go away. It looks like he never will.
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