Goodbye Christopher Robin was my favorite film of last year, so I was beyond excited to see Christopher Robin. And I’ll get into what I thought…
Christopher Robin begins with a tea party for Christopher as he leaves the 100 Acre Wood for boarding school. Then through montage, we see he loses his father, he marries, he goes to war, and comes home after serving away for years to meet his daughter. Then he settles as a manager overseeing an executive bag making company. This older Christopher (Ewen McGregor) has grown into a self-involved working man. Christopher puts his family second and cancels a weekend trip away so he can work to please his boss. Over in the 100 Acre Wood Winnie awakes to find all his friends are gone and seeks out Christopher Robin after not seeing him since he was a child at the tea party. Christopher stumbles into Winnie, yet Christopher is still more interested in finishing his work but eventually decides to help Winnie find their friends.
The scenes that focus solely on Christopher Robin without Winnie and friends are boring and derivative. We don’t need to be told the story of a father that loses focus of his family in favor of work, especially here. Another blunder was casting Ewen McGregor, he looks good on the poster, but he didn’t pull it off. There was no Christopher Robin in him, and it wasn’t something that came later as he rediscovered what was important. The scenes involving Winnie were enchanting, yet they were not emotionally moving because Ewen McGregor’s acting was flat. I wanted it to be a bit of a psychological film playing with our minds whether Winnie was real or imaginary, but it was clear they were real as everyone could see them.
Christopher Robin should have taken a lesson from Spielberg’s Hook as he did a phenomenal character study on the reimagining of a beloved character. If Winnie and friends were not so engaging this would have been a terrible film, instead, it evens the film out to be just ok. If you are interested in Winnie the Pooh, go and see Goodbye Christopher Robin.