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Movie Review: “Kajillionaire”


© Focus Features

Rating: 3.5 out of 5.

Saying that the future of a child lies in the hands of his or her parents will be an understatement. One tries to give as much love as they can while another one just denies it. There are, sadly, instances when parents just use their child to gain some benefits from the government or scam the welfare system.  They have no future and it’s the same fate they prepare their flesh and blood for who do not know that it can be avoided.

Theresa (Debra Winger) and Robert (Richard Jenkins) can hardly be considered loving parents to their only child, Old Dolio (Evan Rachel Wood). They have no moral compass and only survive on their ability to scam people around. Whether it is at the restaurant or airport, or just strangers, they cheat and lie like pros. It’s the same they have taught their daughter, who, despite being twenty-six years old, acts like she is a little child. But when Theresa and Robert fall short of paying off their debt, they meet a stranger (Gina Rodriguez) who they invite to their exclusive company, not realizing that from that moment on nothing will be the same.

Written and directed by Miranda July, “Kajillionaire” is not an ordinary film about a heist. It touches upon a family relationship, disregard and complete negligence towards one’s own child. Old Dolio performs all the dangerous stunts to help her parents to succeed with their plans. But Evan Rachel Wood’s character, unlike from her parents, has a good heart. When, for instance, they enter an elderly man’s house, you can tell it by looking at Dolio’s eyes. She is so fragile and naïve, but like a jar if you drop her, she will break. That’s why her bond with Melanie, the new member of their criminal group, gets stronger because she is able to give her what her parents cannot – respect and appreciation.

In conclusion, July’s film is rather a touching dramedy; it is deep and moving. It offers a delightful journey with an exquisite group of people you will start caring about. Of course, it is far from perfection. But this film has no intention of being perfect. What is pure joy to watch is Wood’s portrayal of Dolio’s childish innocence that is truly charming. As for the film, “Kajillionaire” is worth your time not because of the stellar cast but its brilliant concept which, I am sure, you will rate as highly as I did.

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