"C'mon C'mon" (2021) - A Heartfelt Exploration of Family and Connection
"C'mon C'mon," a film by Mike Mills, is a delicate, touching, and deeply human exploration of family bonds and growing pains that resonates long after the credits roll. The film uses its modest, personal scale to ruminate on the universal themes of love, understanding, and connection.
Joaquin Phoenix stars as Johnny, a radio journalist who becomes the temporary guardian for his nephew, Jesse (played by newcomer Woody Norman). This unexpected arrangement pushes Johnny to explore not only the complexities of parenthood but also his own emotional capabilities.
Phoenix delivers a nuanced performance as the emotionally reserved yet curious uncle. His portrayal of Johnny is full of grace and empathy, providing a strong backbone for the narrative. Woody Norman, despite his young age, is a revelation. His performance as the intelligent, sensitive, and occasionally frustrating Jesse is genuine and engaging, and he holds his own against Phoenix with an unexpected maturity.
The film's black-and-white cinematography adds to its introspective mood. There's a beautiful simplicity to the visuals that complements the story's introspective tone. It allows the audience to focus on the characters, their interactions, and the emotional undercurrents of the narrative.
However, the plot of "C'mon C'mon" might not be for everyone. Its pace is slow, and its story is character-driven, focusing on small moments and emotional beats rather than grand, dramatic scenes. But this gentle narrative structure lets the film deeply explore its characters and themes, and the result is a movie full of quiet, yet powerful, moments of truth.
"C'mon C'mon" is a moving piece of cinema that shines through its performances, its intimate storytelling, and its tender exploration of human connection. It's a love letter to the complicated beauty of family ties, a film that quietly touches the heart and lingers in the mind.