Feb. 27, 2015

This Week's SFR Picks

Newsletters

* indicates required
Choose your newsletter(s):
February 4, 2015 by Peter St. Cyr  
February 18, 2015 by Peter St. Cyr  
February 11, 2015 by Emily Zak  
February 11, 2015 by Joey Peters  

Special Issues

Protesting the PARCC

Suspended teens want meeting with state officals about the standardized test

Local News A dozen Santa Fe High School students stood in front of the state Public Education Department today, calling for a meeting with Public Education Department Secretary Hanna Skandera over testing that they say goes too far. ... More

Feb. 25, 2015 by Joey Peters

 

 
Home / Articles / Cinema / Ok /  Searching For a Labrador (Duck) and The Self
Movies Birding2

Searching For a Labrador (Duck) and The Self

‘A Birder’s Guide to Everything’ is quietly charming

April 30, 2014, 12:00 am

A Birder’s Guide to Everything is a quiet, charming and hopeful comedy (with dramatic underpinnings) about loss and self-discovery. Kodi Smit-McPhee is David, an avid birder struggling with his mother’s long illness and death and his father’s impending second marriage.

To deal, he avoids Dad (James Le Gros, always a welcome presence), and goes on a wild duck chase, thinking he’s discovered a long-extinct duck. With him are his two friends (and fellow birders) Timmy (Alex Wolff, supplying comic relief) and Peter (Michael Chen, supplying neurotic comic relief). There’s also Ellen (Katie Chang), a newish girl at school who also happens to be a gifted photographer.

The story isn’t groundbreaking, but co-writer and director Rob Meyer makes it work in a way that feels organic and honest—the birding angle is a plus. Smit-McPhee (you may remember him from The Road or Let Me In) has the toughest role, balancing regular teen angst and heartbreak with humor, and he’s excellent.

A Birder’s Guide to Everything avoids a common movie pitfall—wrapping things up too easily—by making it clear that the journey David and his father are on will take time. The movie never condescends to the young characters, which is a pleasant surprise. Ben Kingsley is hilarious in a supporting role.


A BIRDER’S GUIDE TO EVERYTHING
Directed by Rob Meyer
With Kodi Smit-McPhee, James Le Gros and Katie Chang
CCA Cinematheque
PG-13
86 min.

 

comments powered by Disqus
 
Close
Close
Close