I hadn’t seen this in over a decade, but I thought it would pair well with the previous evening’s screening of The Fabelmans. And it did! But it’s also clear that at least an hour of this doesn’t hold up as well as much of Spielberg’s oeuvre. The final 30 minutes and the first 30 or so are riveting, but the second act is a real drag. I think it’s because we — the audience — don’t totally connect with where the whole thing is going. There’s no reason for us to be emotionally involved. 

And yet, there is much to like here. Gorgeous visuals and an incredible score. The thematic tension between the easy belief of children and the difficult faith of adults. (I find it fascinating that one of Spielberg’s most consistent thematic threads as a filmmaker has been about belief, and the struggle to find it.)

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