The Wonder of Being Different

This post may contain SPOILERS.

Wonder is a lovely movie that hit theaters at the end of 2017, which was a turbulent, hate-filled year for many. Watching Wonder will help you remember that not everyone in the world is evil and bigoted, and it will give you hope. It’s based on a children’s/middle-grade novel by R.J. Palacio, and it follows Auggie Pullman’s journey from home school to a private middle school. Auggie has Treacher Collins syndrome, a genetic disorder that is characterized by facial deformities. Kids in middle school are needlessly cruel, so naturally, they all pick on Auggie without seeing who he really is: a courageous and intelligent young man.

Warning: Wonder is a tearjerker. Do not watch it without having tissues close by. Somehow the writers and director also managed to make it a tearjerker without making it corny or cheesy. They also divided the movie into several viewpoints, so we get the other characters’ perspective on being the sibling, friend, or parent of Auggie.

I have very little to complain about with this movie. My only issue with it is that the Pullman family’s dog, Daisy, was put to sleep close to the end, and I don’t see what that really had to do with the plot except to emphasize the fact that life still happens when you’re fixated on your own issues. I also believe that was part of the movie’s message (aside from the obvious anti-bullying theme): Life doesn’t revolve around you. When you think your problems are insurmountable, there is always someone who has bigger problems, and there is always something to focus on aside from your own problems. It’s a good message for the self-focused world we live in.

tl;dr: If you want something different from the gazillions of superhero movies and don’t mind shedding a few tears, you will love Wonder.