Straight out the Lois Lowry’s novel, The Willoughbys has been released today on Netflix, directed by Kris Pearn’s. This animated version will definitely blow your mind!
Starting with a sarcastic cat which, makes an unexpected narrator voiced by Ricky Gervais, the story takes place at an old house. The Wollughbys were known as a rich, successful, and proud family that are identified by their distinguished mustache (even women would wear it). Unfortunately, this parents were the exception of the family legacy. Moved by their own selfish pleasure, the Mother (voiced by Jane Krakowski), and Father (voiced by Martin Short) were labeled as no-kid-friendly couple. They decided not to take care of their four children completely, they only took of each other businesses (implying sex). Tim (voiced by Will Forte) is known as the eldest Willoughby, the caretaker. Believing in his family pride, he has always dreamed about restoring their lineage from his parents failures. The second child and only girl, Jane (voiced by Alessia Cara), was a reckless singer, always pouring her heart out through her voice even if that would mean pissing off Mother. The last kiddos, were a set of scary twins (whose parents could not care less about it) giving them the exact same name, the Barnaby’s (voiced by Seán Cullen). Other mean characters on this story were, the Orphan baby, the candy distributor, Commandant Melanoff’s (voiced by Terry Crews) and Linda the Nanny (voiced by Maya Rudolph) who was an Orphan too. The kids only want to redeem their parents mistakes , without any experience in the subject but with a full disposition to make it right.
The plot of this amazing story begins when Jane found a mysterious box placed at their front door. For their surprise this box that had a baby inside. Moved by empathy, Jane decided to adopt the baby trying to give her the chance to live better than they have ever been. Tim, who was always putting things in order opposed and asked Jane to get rid of her before they could get into trouble. But, it was too late for that, they have lost the baby inside the house. Mother and Father discover that a baby (who was clearly not a Willoughby) was in their house, they got furious and took the opportunity at their very best interest by kicking their own kids out of the house in exchange for getting rid of the Orphan.
LET THE ADVENTURES BEGIN…
The kiddos went to find the perfect place for the baby following Jane’s instinct without realizing they had found a way to change their lives back as well. Going back to their house, The Willoughbys cook a plan of making them orphans, getting rid of their awful parents through world traveling. But their (parents) selfishness wasn’t enough, Mother and Father decided to give them away and sell the family house leaving them with nothing, I know, unbelievable right? Linda chooses to keep the Willoughbys, but Tim made a mistake over jealousy and called social services and they got split out. Later, Linda came to the rescue of the kids and they cook up another plan that would imply all of them being together again. They left for Switzerland to find Mother and Father and asked to be kept again with no attached needed or love involved but being together. Sadly, as usual, they tricked the children and leave them behind, without any hope. As the cat says, an old fashioned story doesn’t end that way. They were found in the mountain by Ruth (the orphan baby), Linda, and the Commander and they all seven became a family.
Happily Ever After!
The narrative keeps humor but shows how hard it is for some children’s living these types of circumstances. Displayed a dysfunctional family, irresponsible parents, and four innocents being abandoned, leaving home alone their entire life. Starving of hunger and love. I loved that the story no matter how sad it was the author keeps a humorous narration. I founded the film giving us a few critiques and a big lesson on this matter.
1. The Social System
Linda was an Orphan. She talks terrified about the idea of any kid being kept by them. Not necessarily for the way the system treated her, but because she was never adopted. She was represented as a voice of those who never had the opportunity to live with a normal family.
More than 60% of children in foster care spend two to five years in the system before being adopted. Almost 20% spend five or more years in foster care before being adopted. Some never get adopted.Coughlin, Amy and Caryn Abramowitz. Cross-Cultural Adoption. Washington, D.C.: Lifeline Press, 2004.
2. A Man Adopting a Baby
I found this part as well as a critique from the author. When the Nanny discover the Willoughbys has given a baby to a man, she even stop the conversation about the abuse Tim was getting from his parent to get to the bottom of where the baby was. They went to the factory and Linda was expecting to found a bad situation, and even had the intentions to get the baby from him. Hopefully, they noticed how completely wrong she was about it.
Lesson to be learn
How valuable a family is, seeing how tragic life could it be for those who suffer by the hand of their own parents or family members. It is inspiring the way the author focuses on showing us tragic events to make us realize how fortunate we are. Watching and feeling from other people’s pain and suffering is a clear way to make us be thankful for what we have today, but more importantly learn to be empathetic with others the same as Jane was with Ruth. They share the same fate, being abandoned and that did not lead her to leave the baby out in the street, on the contrary, she was fighting to be better than her parents and her situation. The Willoughbys realize they were always a family together. And the finals scene, that moment when Linda finally got the family she always dreamed about. I founded it a beautiful lesson from the author. That even though the circumstances might try to define your destiny sooner or later you will be able to fulfill it but it is on to you. Linda was about to leave, she feels betrayed and neglected but her heart did not let her do it, she was able to move on from the suffering that may drive her life and starts chasing what she wanted. The Nanny safe the Willoughbys life and got the one she deserves.
I encourage you all to watch this film, to share your experience with your family. And begin to think about new expectations in your life, do not let the past lead you anymore.