CAPTAIN FANTASTIC – review

CAPTAIN FANTASTIC

     When my wife and I first became parents, we had all this high and mighty goals for our first born.  Let’s not let them watch t.v., play a lot of video games, only read books, and learn music, not just one but many.  We wanted out children to be academic rock stars, who didn’t want this for their children. images-79

     Actor/Writer/Director Matt Ross brings us a story where Ben (Viggo Mortensen) is a father who has brought his children into the Forrest away from society, T.V., Video Games, and other technology problems and raised them with a military type training.  They hunt and grow food, they run, climb mountains, and other outdoor activities.  They study and read, his kids know physics, and I am talking young to old he has had them on one heck of a home-school program where the home is in the great outdoors. url-1

This seems ok and great to him, and the kids don’t really have a problem with it.  Then an event happens with their mother that changes everything.  They are asked not to attend a family gathering in honor of their mother, but this is not acceptable for Ben and they make the journey to the event.imgres-75

Oldest son Bodevan (George Mackay) has been accepted to every prestigious college, but hasn’t told his father. He just became a man by killing a deer with his bare hands and a knife, but is nervous about telling his father he would like to join society.  This is where we learn while it would be great to keep your children close to you and to teach them everything and keep them away from all, it might not be in the best interest of the children to not go to school and learn about social aspects of our society. 

The kids all of them are smart and can pass any survival skills you throw at them, but for instance when a girl kisses Bodevan he ends up proposing to her.  We have some great scenes with the kids Aunt and Uncle and their children, this is where we really see the deliverance in the way society has come, and the way it used to be with out as much technology, and when schools taught you important things like the Bill of Rights. images-80

There is a lot of controversy between Ben and his Father In law (Frank Langella).  He not only blames Ben for taking their daughter and grand kids away from them, but also for not helping his Daughter Ben’s wife.  I don’t want to go into what the event is you have to see the film and feel the hurt and pain from not only Ben and the kids, but the whole family.   

This independent flick is so very good I grade it an A.  I love hoe Ross brings us points of view from both sides of the social issue.  You could argue against Ben’s ways, or for them.  I came out of the movie really thinking different about society.  We are too Materialistic, we eat too much processed food, Cola like Ben says is Poison, and Video games, T.V. and phones have taken our children’s heads away from their studies, and even society as a whole. 

Brad Watts 

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *