"Little Boy" is set statesdie during World War II. The lead character is a boy named Pepper Busby (Salvati) who is eight years old and afflicted with a condition that has stunted his growth, hence the nickname "Little Boy". His older brother is rejected from serving overseas due to having flat feet. So their father, played by Michael Rapaport, decides to join the armed forces and winds up being captured by the Japanese. Little Boy is given hope by a traveling magician who convinces the youngster that he has magical powers. Then, being propeled by the advice of his local priest, Little Boy decides to use his magical powers to bring home his father.
2015, Color, Rated PG-13, 1 Hr 47 mins
DTS-HD Master 5.1, 2.40:1 Aspect Ratio
Starring: Jakob Salvati, Emily Watson, Cary-Hiroyuki Tagawa and Michael Rapaport
Directed by: Alejandro Monteverde
I personally enjoyed this movie up until the last act. The Opening and middle acts were sappy but entertaining – here is this helpless boy who just wants his best friend (his father) to come home safely from a brutal war. The message of hope and faith is uplifting and the interplay of other charatcters like the Japanese immigrant, Hashimoto, lend an interesting counterbalance to the main thrust of the plot. The young actor playing Pepper, Jakob Salvati, is over his head in some respects but largely does a plausible acting job nontheless. The big problem for me were the predictable and campy twists at the end of the film. I had hoped for a stronger finish. This is very much worth a rental for a family night of movie watching.
This movie was shot on film and the transfer retains the film grain but also the dimensionality that is inherent in film transfers. The colors are bright and the shots of the seaside vistas can be stunning at times. In some scenes, though, the brightest details are washed out so that is the reason for the half star deduction.
Short of a few loud passages, this movie is mostly dialog and music driven and the audio track is competently servicable in this regard. For example, voice intelligibility is very high. The typical environmental sound effects are clear, realistic and properly proportioned in the listening space. This is a solid audio track despite being largely unspectacular.
This is a two-disc set with the Blu-ray, a DVD and a Digital HD Ultraviolet code. The limited on-disc extras are in HD. These include an animated short, "Snack Attack"; a short video thanking the movie’s investors and a series of six deleted scenes.