I wasn’t expecting something like that. In the beginning, it kind of seemed like a happy story where you simply get to see the innocent kids play around. Btw it reminded of my primary school life in London. Kids are so different from adults. But then the movie gets more and more intense. The girl’s mom facing reality in life. Willem Dafoe was playing a very important role there. He was like a father to both the girl and the girl’s mom. He goes hard with the mom because even when her child makes a lot of trouble she doesn’t seem to feel any responsibilities for the child’s mischiefs. Moonee seems oblivious to the struggles of the adults at first. However, it shifts to the child’s point of view so the audience will understand that she’s observing the adults and that she’s unconsciously beginning to notice the problems surrounding them. The scene where Moonee starts crying and her friend holding her hand, rushing towards Disney land was so shocking and ravishing at the same time. It made my heart pound fast. I nearly started crying when I saw Moonee bursting into tears since she was always smiling and never showed her negative feelings until then. It was such an emotional ending.
“... No magic exists that can make the pain of reality disappear, but we don’t know how to believe in anything else. This movie accomplished something miraculous - two things, actually. It casts a spell and tells the truth.” - nyt