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Jojo Rabbit [2019] (1 disc)

Director:Taika Waititi
Writer:Taika Waititi
Composer:Michael Giacchino
Length:108 minutes
(1 hour 48 minutes)
MPAA Rating:PG-13
Sorting Category:Dark Comedy
IMDB Rating:7.9/10
Rotten Tomatoes Rating:79%
Amazon Rating:4.5/5 stars
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  • Drama
  • Comedy
  • Dark Comedy
  • Action
  • Family
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Synopsis: A young boy in Hitler's army finds out his mother is hiding a Jewish girl in their home.

Reaction: Inventive story, creatively told. Taika Waititi does an excellent job playing with the humor and slowly evolving the tone as Jojo's understanding of the reality of what's going on slowly crystallizes. And it has one very effective gut punch.

Personal Rating: 9/10

Taika Waititi => Director / Writer / Adolf
Michael Giacchino => Composer
Christine Leunens => Novel
Adolf Hitler => Self (uncredited) (archive footage)
Alfie Allen => Finkel
Archie Yates => Yorki
Luke Brandon Field => Christoph
Rebel Wilson => Fraulein Rahm
Roman Griffin Davis => Jojo
Sam Haygarth => Hans
Sam Rockwell => Captain Klenzendorf
Scarlett Johansson => Rosie
Stephen Merchant => Deertz
Thomasin McKenzie => Elsa

Random Trivia For This Title:

  • I don't like the idea of seeing people hang, Waititi said, and that's what led in part to the reveal of Rosie's death without showing her face. He added that seeing your dead loved one is an intimate thing, and that we didn't "have permission" to see what Jojo saw.
  • In the scene with the Gestapo doing a walk through in Jojo's house, Stephen Merchant stood on a box to make himself even taller than Sam Rockwell in a close up of just the two of them. It was for comic effect and to show his character's intimidating nature.
  • In their last appearance together onscreen, Captain Klenzendorf (Sam Rockwell) and Finkel (Alfie Allen) are both seen with pink triangles on their uniforms. This references the relationship suggested between the two of them throughout the film, as Nazis would mark the clothes of gay men with pink triangles.
  • In the scene when the Gestapo comes to Jojo's house "Heil Hitler" is said 31 times in one minute, according to Waititi. He wanted a funny moment, but also wanted to illustrate how ridiculous Nazi protocols were.
  • Elsa refers to Hitler as "pathetic little man who can't even grow a full moustache". Hitler actually had a full moustache until WW1 when he had to cut it back in order to wear a gas mask. This shorter version became his famous moustache.
  • Rebel Wilson suggested that anyone listening to the commentary both loves the film and is excited to hear all the juicy behind-the-scenes production details. "I've basically given no information about anything so far," added Waititi, telling no lies.
  • This film marks the third year in a row that Sam Rockwell appears in a film nominated for 'Best Picture' after Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri (2017) and Vice (2018).
  • Taika Waititi wore a fat suit while portraying Adolf Hitler.
  • The film is based on Christine Leunens's novel Caging Skies, a book that Waititi's mom loved before turning him onto it as well. "Imaginary Hitler is not in the book," he adds, although the rest of the story's main characters are.
  • Mel Brooks, the creator of The Producers (1967), praised the film in his speech at the AFI awards in Jan 2020: "I just saw Jojo Rabbit (2019), and it's really a terrific and eloquent and beautiful picture."
  • In one scene, the Adolf Hitler character appears in a traditional Native American headdress. Hitler was a fan of German writer [?] Karl May, whose most famous books were supposed autobiographical tales set in the American west featuring an Apache man named Winnetou. May's books fostered a fascination in Germany for Native Americans.
  • Taika Waititi doesn't like to give a lot of direction to actors. "I don't feel it's necessary if someone knows the words and can say them relatively fast and not maybe feel like they're 'acting'."
  • Stephen Merchant said he imagined members of the Gestapo like his character as "quite petty bureaucrats" who, prior to the war received little respect, and during the war let their power go to their heads.
  • The opening song is "Komm, gib mir deine Hand", the German language version of The Beatles' {"I Want to Hold Your Hand"}, released on 4 February 1964 in Germany. The closing song is the German version of David Bowie's {"Heroes"}, released in 1977, which is about two lovers separated by the Berlin Wall.
  • Sam Rockwell said that in addition to having a dialogue coach to learn the accent, he watched classical and veteran actors like Marlon Brando, Ralph Fiennes, and [?] Oskar Werner portray World War II-era Germans, and then decided that ultimately his character would be more like Bill Murray or Walter Matthau with a German accent.
  • Throughout the movie Adolf Hitler offered Jojo cigarettes. In real life he hated cigarettes. He did not allow others to smoke around him.
  • Taika Waititi described the film as a love letter to his mother, and single parents everywhere: "It wasn't until I was a grown up and I had kids of my own that I realized 'oh, these parent people, they make a lot of sacrifices, it's really hard raising a kid!'"
  • When Taika Waititi, who is Maori/Jewish, was asked about why he chose to play the role of Adolf Hitler, he said "The answer's simple, what better 'F^@& you' to the guy?"
  • Taika Waititi discovered in his research that WWII Germany was very vibrant and fashionable, and was interested in shying away from traditional war films showing it as dreary and dark, instead presenting the town as a seemingly celebratory place and dressing characters as stylishly as possible. He liked the idea that everything seems happy, but just underneath the surface "the third Reich is crumbling, and, you know, the dream is over."
  • Captain Klenzendorf is implied throughout the film to be gay, which could explain why he vouches for Elsa in the Gestapo scene. Jewish and homosexual people were both targeted by the Nazis in the Holocaust, so he was in a similar situation to her and likely saw it as a duty to protect a fellow discriminated person.