The protagonist Oskar Schell (Thomas Horn) suffers from Asperger syndrome; an anomaly characterized by difficulty in socialization and repetitive patterns of behavior and interests. He is intelligent, inquisitive and at the same time different. Oskar shares a very attached to his father Thomas Schell (Tom Hanks) but maintains a distance with his mother Linda Schell (Sandra Bullock). Thomas leaves no stone unturned to assure his son that he is special and often sends Oskar on outdoor explorations; get him to understand the world through logic and reason and of course socialize with people.
All is well until 9/11 when Thomas gets killed in the WTC. The young mind reasons hard to understand why someone should kill a building full of unknown people. While randomly looking in his father’s closet, he stumbles on an unknown key in an envelope.
What makes it special:
The plot has an inherent innocence to it which lends the essential charm to an otherwise ordinary plot. An adult mind may find many a loop holes and flaws, but then, this movie is intended to be seen through the eyes of an nine year old different/special kid. Once you get on with it, ELIC is a wonderful journey following Oskar’s innocence and live though his discoveries and realizations as your own. That makes this movie a winner which in the end a journey from denial to acceptance, fear to strength, unknown to discovery, strangers to friends and innocence to realization.
- I didn’t know what was waiting for me. Although my stomach hurt and my eyes were watering I’d made up my mind that nothing was gonna stop me. Not even me.
- Everyone took more time than I had planned for… to try and comfort me and make me feel better about my dad… and to tell me their stories. But I didn’t want to feel better and I didn’t want friends… I just wanted the lock. I wasn’t getting any closer to my dad… I was losing him.
- Were you snooping on me? No, I was searching for you.