“When given the choice between being right and being kind, CHOOSE KIND” – Wonder Movie
Coming to theaters THIS Friday, November 17th…the Wonder movie is a must watch movie based on the best-selling book by R.J Palacio. The need to “choose kind” is more prevalent in our world than ever. Wonder could not be a better way to spark a heartfelt conversation with your child(ren) about being kind and bullying.
Wonder is about a little boy named August Pullman also known as Auggie, a tough, sweet, 10-year-old boy, who was born with distorted facial features — a “craniofacial difference” caused by an anomaly in his DNA. Essentially it is two speciifc negatives in his DNA that gave him the syndrome known as Treacher Collins Syndrome (TCS) and a condition called mandibulofacial dysostosis which leads him to 27 craniofacial surgeries by the time he enters 5th grade. Up until this point Auggie has been homeschooled due to the surgeries he needed and by 5th grade his mom, played by Julia Roberts, feels he is ready to integrate into a “normal” school. Auggie deals with the cruel nature of kids almost entering 5th grade which is generally a normal rite of passage for most kids today. The Wonder movie will break your heart as you follow Auggie’s journey but will also make you cry happy tears by the end and have a renewed faith in the ability for kids to #ChooseKind because of their inherent goodness.
While the Wonder movie is not based on a true life story, it is inspired by an encounter that R.J Palacio had with her children about a decade ago. R.J. states in a People Magazine interview that “I was in front of an ice cream store with my two sons and my younger son, who was only 3 at the time, saw a little girl that had a very significant craniofacial difference.” Her son she says, “He got a little scared and he started to cry. In my haste to kind of shield her from seeing his response or his reaction to her face, I kind of whisked him away really quickly. Afterwards, I started really thinking … what I should have done, of course, is just turn to the little girl and maybe started up a conversation and shown by example that it was really nothing to be afraid of. That just got me thinking about what it must be like to face a world every day that doesn’t quite know how to face you back.”
One of the things I loved the most about the Wonder movie is the conversation post movie with my child. This movie does a great job talking about bullying in an easy to digest way for kids. You and your child will identify with so many situations in the movie. While most of us have not had the experiences that Auggie deals with, we have all been picked on for the way we look and that hits home.
Wonder is a MUST WATCH movie for any grade school child. Out in theaters today November 17th!