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Movies with Maricor: Nowhere Boy

by Maricor Capulong

Directed by: Sam Taylor Wood
Starring: Kristin Scott Thomas, Aaron Johnson, and Anne-Marie Duff

Aaron Johnson as John Lennon in "Nowhere Boy"
Nowhere boy emphasizes the life of John Lennon (Aaron Johnson) during his High School, pre-Beatles era, mid-Quarry Men stardom. It give us a closer look at the anguish and turmoil a teenage boy experiences, being pitted in-between two parental juggernauts, one his birth mother Julia (Anne Marie Duff) who had left him at a young age due to marriage discourse with John's father, and his Aunt Mimi (his mother's sister, Kristin Scott Thomas) who had raised him as her own.

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The drama unfolds, when John finally meets his mother and get to know her personality during frequent secret trips to her nearby home. Much like any child wanting to know a little about themselves through their birth parents personalities, he progresses to finding his love of music along with his unorthodox rebelliousness through Julia.

The heart wrenching story touches the core of anyone who watches it simple because of the four star performances that all three main actors give. Anne Marie Duff captured perfectly the socially improper mother coming into terms with her mistakes, making late amends to her young son. Only realizing now, that the actions she made rippled stronger onto the future pushing her to a needed personal growth through turmoil.

Although it is well known that Kristen is a guaranteed success in her craft, she still embodies this by keeping consistent with her portrayal of every character she studies. Kristen shows the restrictions of a female trying to be strong for her young in times of hardships and loss. In her facial expressions alone you can read the anger, the frustrations, and the bitterness towards Julia.

I have seen Aaron Johnson in "The Greatest" costarring Susan Sarandon, although he had a small role in the movie, I sensed that he would be one of the next up and coming English actors. By choosing a role as dramatic as this, and executing it perfectly he bypassed the stage of just being a cute face in girl teen flicks.
This role required Aaron to learn guitar, how to perform onstage, to learn John Lennon's mannerism, and also learn the dynamics of a boy from a broken family history. Aaron's charisma transferred into the film, and you can tell he loved the role by the performance. There are many facets to this youg actor, and he convincingly pulls each off. One scene he's funny, dumb and naive, in the next he's bullish, troubled and angry.

Director Sam Taylor Wood did a brilliant job churning out great performances from all the actors. Seeing how Paul, John and George would have been in their younger years, I get goose bumps at knowing full well what they have accomplished in music alone. Although the movie is not about the Beatles, there are scenes that conjure nostalgia like the infamous recording of their first demo song towards the end of the film. This was a tasteful biographical movie that I am sure John would approve of.

The movie is playing in select theaters right now.



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