Extremely Loud & Incredibly Close follows the story of Oskar Schell, an eleven year old boy who is struggling to come to terms with the loss of his father on 9/11.
Like the official site states, this film “… is not a story about September 11th, it’s about every day after”.
Oskar, played by Thomas Horn, is a young boy who the film touches upon as having Aspergers, yet this is never fully confirmed. Oskar is highly intelligent yet struggles with dealing with his emotions as well as with other people. He has an extremely close relationship with his father (played by Tom Hanks) who would set him tasks and puzzles, finding a way of forging a relationship with his son through a way he understands and can cope with. Tragically, Oskar’s world is overturned when his father is killed in the World Trade Centre on that terrible day.
Oskar finds himself struggling with his grief which he finds incomprehensible. His mother (Sandra Bullock) doesn’t seem to understand him and seems to be distant from him and the raw emotions that Oskar is experiencing is wonderfully and convincingly conveyed in this movie.
Whilst sifting through his father’s belongings Oskar finds a key and he then embarks on a journey to find the lock in which it fits. His quest takes him through New York where he meets a variety of people – all of whom have dealt with their own struggles and pains – and consequently discovers previously unknown links to his father.
Extremely Loud & Incredibly Close is not a fast paced adventure film with explosions and big, dramatic car chases but a journey told through a boy’s eyes – a boy who starts out on a journey to find something but ends up finding something very much different and far more important.
This film is beautifully acted. Thomas Horn plays the part of Oskar beautifully which isn’t bad considering the boy had never acted before. Emotional, heart-rending yet compelling, this is not an easy film to watch if you’re emotions are easily played with. A box of tissues is a must!