“The juxtaposition of having such a mature story portrayed in such child-like way was stellar, and I cannot forget about the amazing animation itself.”
Yesterday I got a chance to watch My Life as a Zucchini which, as far as movies go, this one had the strangest title that I’ve ever encountered. My Life as a Zucchini, originally titled Ma vie de Courgette, is a french animated film that follows Zucchini, a young boy who is placed in foster care after an unfortunate accident leaves him without parents. The film essentially chronicles the trials and tribulations orphaned children have to go through, as well as looks at a lot of very mature issues through the eyes of a child. It’s really great.
The first thing you’ll notice about My Life as a Zucchini is just how beautiful this movie looks. I can appreciate that all animation takes a lot of time and skill, but there are some movies that just blow you away instantly. My Life as a Zucchini is one of those movies. The attention to detail found in My Life as a Zucchini is astounding to say the least. Everything is so carefully crafted and thoughtfully placed, and you can tell that every frame is filled with so much hard work and love for the craft and the story. I also loved how stylized this world is. My Life as a Zucchini isn’t realistic looking, but that almost makes it better. The subject matter of the movie is so adult, so real, that the juxtaposition of having very stylized and child-like animation adds to the message itself. It really helps you see things through the eyes of the children in the movie when you are essentially taken off guard by the lovely, fun animation, and then blindsided by talk of suicide and deportation.
The next thing you’ll notice about My Life as a Zucchini is the terribly dark story. This movie starts off almost as deep as you can get emotionally speaking. And when I say that this movie is sad, I mean it’s sad. I don’t cry anymore (that’s not me bragging, I think I’m just broken) but My Life as a Zucchini got me close a couple of times. The way that it manages to hit these emotional beats in the perfect ways make these moments all the more impactful. I also really appreciated how the film blended comedy and tragedy as well. This once again goes back to the whole ‘seeing the world through child’s eyes’ thing, but it actually worked. Not only did the animation style create an interesting contrast between the subject matter and the look of the film, but the subject matter was contrasting with itself as well. There would be moments that were absolutely tragic, but then a dumb joke would come in and relieve all of the tension. Once again this created a very interesting experience that really added to the emotional connection to the story.
Overall My Life as a Zucchini is one of those movies that is going to stick with me for a while. The juxtaposition of having such a mature story portrayed in such child-like way was stellar, and I cannot forget about the amazing animation itself.
I give My Life as a Zucchini an A