On paper you could argue that 'The BFG' screams "blockbuster summer movie" - a combination of Disney, Steven Spielberg and beloved children's author Roald Dahl with one of the best children's books ever. But the reality is a disappointing mess of dull special effects with mismatching awe-inspiring music. The flaw in turning Roald Dahl books into family films, is that words on a page don't have movie-style ratings. In the BFG the main plot of the film is the existence of child- eating giants, which naturally due to the rating and audience of the film we only see materialized in a giant sniffing Sophie and going 'yum'. I wasn't expecting graphic images of children being mauled, but with no darkness whatsoever the other giants became comical stereotypes who define the disclaimer on the back of the DVD of 'mild threat', despite their main role in the story being outrageous murderous beasts that require military intervention. So immediately from the word go, the main drive for the film is fundamentally flawed: the giants aren't scary, it just looked like the dwarfs from the Hobbit trilogy got lost. If you've read the book you'll know the main story: (a) Girl taken to giant-land by the BFG. (b) Girl learns about other children-eating giants, and that the BFG just goes around giving children nice dreams. (c) They go to the queen and use the army to round up the giants and put them in a hole. Yet it's almost laughable that we spend the majority of the film in (b), sat around laughing at the BFG's speech impediment (ha, disability ) and despite taking a lot of the dialogue directly from the book, failing to transfer the magic. There's no conversation about how different children from different countries taste (hilarious - go read the book), or even explanation about the Snozzcumber (amusing - go read the book). The outcome is a movie that feels both slow at times, and rushed at others. And you get epic music climaxing as the young girl looks around in awe, but you're left wondering how she knows what's going on because as an audience we certainly don't. Admittedly the quality of the visuals in terms of realism of the CGI and use of motion- capture was top notch. However in the modern world of cinema this is far from impressive; it's been normalized so much over the past few years of filmmaking that I'd argue that CGI is only significant if done badly. It is possible to make a film about a classic story using groundbreaking special effects while retaining the heart and drive of a classic family movie (see Disney's 2016 'The Jungle Book'). And go back in time and release 'The BFG' ten, or twenty years ago and the effects may be distracting enough to make up for the shoddy storytelling. But if you're looking to go to the cinema today I'd recommend every other film currently showing over the BFG, and there lies the problem. The film isn't the worst thing to ever grace our screens - but put simply there are so many better films out there, if you find yourself watching this one I'd recommend you reassess your life (I know I certainly am). Let this stand as a warning to films made from classic books, or films made from re-making earlier classic films: at the end of the day if it isn't as good as it's inspiration, you'd be better off reading the book or watching the original. And in the case of the Big Friendly Giant, I would recommend you doing just that.
Ten-year-old Sophie is in for the adventure of a lifetime when she meets the Big Friendly Giant. Naturally scared at first, the young girl soon realizes that the 24-foot behemoth is actually quite gentle and charming. As their friendship grows, Sophie's presence attracts the unwanted attention of Bloodbottler, Fleshlumpeater and other giants. After traveling to London, Sophie and the BFG must convince Queen Elizabeth to help them get rid of all the bad giants once and for all.