A beautifully visual and powerful story of a boy coming to terms with the loss of his mother to a terminal illness. Conor (Lewis MacDougall) is “too old to be a kid, too young to be a man” and is struggling with his mother’s illness. In an effort to cope he starts a fantasy about the yew tree in the church grounds he can see from his window.
There is so much to praise in this tale that it is hard to know where to start, but the most striking facet of it is the visually brilliant images throughout. Conor and his mother (Felicity Jones) are both artists and using this imagery the film is punctuated with animated water-colour stories that are a joy to watch. The “monster” voiced with a gravel and wizened tone by Liam Neeson also looks extraordinary with fire and warmth in his eyes. Beyond this there are the touching moments between mother and son that build to an inevitable but no less powerful denouement.
A truly impressive story about grief told in a beautiful manner. Seek it out.