Pelish at the Movies – ‘The Goldfinch’

~By Randy Pelish~

Shakespeare may have been one of the last writers to avoid the caustic displeasure of critics. Magazines and newspapers were in the future. Lucky Will!

Which brings us to The Goldfinch. This Pulitzer Prize winning novel was not admired by the cultural literati. The film is even less admired. The majority of critics have slaughtered this film. I cannot share their negative opinion of this rather clever if somewhat overlong mystery. While it may not be profound it is most certainly entertaining.

The purported star of the film is Ansel Elgort, but in reality the stars are two teenagers Oakes Fegley and Finn Wolfhard who play best friends; both unloved, both abused whose enduring friendship is the real subject of the film. While Elgort and Anuerin Barnard are okay as the adults, the youngsters Fegley and Wolfhard have a dynamic that is deeply moving, and the camera captures those emotions. That alone is enough reason to see The Goldfinch.

Sometimes I think movie critics write to hear the captivating sounds of their own voices. Yes, the movie has its rough patches. Yes, in places it has its own mediocrity. But what these critics miss is that the two young boys bring this movie to life. They make the movie. They make it sing. Too bad these unhappy film critics are missing that. They miss the donut. They complain about the hole.

The Goldfinch is currently playing at movie theaters in the Reno Area.

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