You do not want to miss this one! From the co-directors of Nat Faxon and Jim Rash go deep into a family’s issues with a little bit of comedy and a whole lot drama which shows the life of a 14 year old kid named Duncan (Liam James) who is experiencing the troubles of his mother’s new boyfriend Trent (Steve Carell). His mother Pam (Toni Collette) is has just been divorced and is an insecure single parent trying to make her and her son feel happiness again. Duncan has been forced to take a road trip and be stuck in a beach out with both her new boyfriend and his snobby daughter. As for this 14 year old, Duncan has to now deal with her boyfriend who continuously bullies him, until he just cannot handle it anymore. But for Pam, she is just clueless and does not see how patronizing her new boyfriend is.
For this family, you can see all the struggles of a combining family are, but Duncan cannot take it anymore and runs into a guy named Owen (Sam Rockwell). Owen is the assistant manager for the water park near by called Water Wizz, and is sees faith in Duncan. Duncan starts to have a true feeling of home and family at Water Park. He ends up getting a job there, and becoming one of the best employees. All the employees that work start to give Duncan a feeling of family, that he feels he has not been getting from his mom and her new boyfriend. His only friends throughout the film are those at the water park, even though he does not know all the strangers, he feels that to they too are apart of the Water Wizz family. After working there for a month, he ended up winning best employee, and this helps with his emotions gets him through this tough time. As for Owen who knows what it is like to have shattered dreams, he really is the reason the movie turned out so great.
In addition, there is a girl who lives next store to their beach house, and she also sees more in Duncan than the rest. He did not really have any motivation, or self confidence to talk to such an amazing girl, but he knew she saw what the people at the waterpark saw, someone special. In addition, Duncan’s mom started noticing that he has not been around a lot lately, and follows him to the waterpark, where she sees her son have the ability to be happy, and himself. Furthermore, Duncan throughout the entire movie is trying to prove to his mom that Trent is cheating on her, or is not the guy she thinks he is. This is an ongoing theme throughout the film, and with the help of Owen he fights until his mom sees the man Trent really is.
In the end, life must move on for Duncan, but he the trip would not be remembered if it was not for Owen and those at the waterpark. On the car ride home, you get to see that Duncan made a major impact on his mom. He sits in the way way back of the car, and faces the outside, while everyone is together talking, but she decides to get out after a quick stop, and climb into the way way back of the car, and be with him, instead of sitting with Trent.
This film is a fantastic, but it has it's heart breaking parts, yet parts filled with joy. I highly would recommend this amazing film for anyone to see, however is a great movie for the family. I think it could not have been written any better and with the inclusion of strong emotions throughout, and amazing acting from all involved, it truly is a film to see.
“The Way Way Back” is rated PG-13 (Parents strongly cautioned). Running Time: 1 hour 43 minutes.