DEAR MR. WATTERSON
A Trip Down Memory Lane
Release Date: November 15, 2013
Starring: Berkeley Breathed, Seth Green,
Stephan Pastis, Bill Amend,
Joel Allen Schroeder
Audience: Older children and adults
Rating: Not Rated
Runtime: 99 minutes
Distributor: Gravitas Ventures
Director: Joel Allen Schroeder
Executive Producer: N/A
Producer: Chris Browne, Matt McUsic,
Joel Allen Schroeder
Address Comments To:
Nolan Gallagher, CEO/Founder, Gravitas Ventures
209 Richmond Street
El Segundo, CA 90245
Phone: (310) 388-9362
Website: www.gravitasventures.com; Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
(B, C, L, M) Light moral, redemptive worldview celebrating childhood imagination and reminding audiences the power that stories have over children, including one man says “Thank God” twice; two obscenities and one light profanity, a shot of the infamous bumper stick of Calvin urinating; no violence; no sexual content; no nudity; no alcohol; no smoking or drugs; and, a woman states that her first and last crime was shoplifting a Calvin and Hobbes book.
The documentary DEAR MR. WATTERSON is a trip down memory lane that explores the beloved comic strip Calvin and Hobbes and the cultural effect it had on many of its readers. DEAR MR. WATTERSON is very entertaining and informative, celebrating childhood imagination, with one Christian reference and brief, light foul language, so caution is advised.
Calvin and Hobbes is a simple, yet surprisingly deep comic strip that depicts the imaginative 6-year-old boy Calvin, and his stuffed tiger Hobbes, who is Calvin’s counterpart, fellow adventurer and all around loyal friend. Director Joel Schroeder was one of the many children affected by the daily comic. So, he set out to interview not the creator of the strip, Bill Watterson, but the many fans who were deeply moved and inspired by Calvin and Hobbes, to understand the cultural impact it had.
Obviously, Calvin and Hobbes inspired many cartoonists, and DEAR MR. WATTERSON interviews a good many of them that respect and admire Bill Watterson for the work he did. One of the defining differences between Calvin and Hobbes and many other comic strips was its ability to appease a 9-year-old’s imagination and a 40-year-old’s intellect. The wild adventures Calvin and Hobbes would embark on captivated and entertained many children who identified with Calvin and saw themselves as him. However, Calvin and his stuffed tiger would also engage in political and philosophical discussions, using rhetoric no 6-year-old would use. Joel interviews cartoonists, comic strip historians, and other Calvin and Hobbes enthusiasts like comedian/actor Seth Green. They discuss why this strip influenced them and will continue to entertain for generations to come.
The documentary also discusses Watterson’s refusal to let Calvin and Hobbes be merchandised, possibly missing out on hundreds of millions of dollars. Many of the interviewees give differing opinions on Watterson’s decision. Some say it kept the strip artistically credible, while others believe it missed a huge opportunity to entertain millions more. Whatever the case, the incredibly private Watterson made his choice final and to this day, Calvin and Hobbes continues to grow in popularity.
DEAR MR. WATTERSON is a very well done documentary, with clever editing and animation. Joel Schroeder does a great job at keeping the pace swift and avoids dull moments. The movie is both entertaining and informative. Anyone who grew up reading Calvin and Hobbes, as this reviewer did, will be met with the comforting nostalgia the comic strip offered.
DEAR MR. WATTERSON celebrates childhood imagination and reminds viewers about the power stories can have over children’s hearts and minds. One interviewee says “Thank God” that the Calvin and Hobbes ran while it did because of technological advances. DEAR MR. WATTERSON is almost void of foul language, but sadly, one man blurts a few light obscenities and one light profanity, so caution is advised, especially for younger children.
The documentary DEAR MR. WATTERSON is a trip down memory lane that explores the beloved comic strip Calvin and Hobbes, which ran in newspapers from 1985-1995. Calvin and Hobbes is a simple, yet surprisingly deep comic strip that depicts the imaginative 6-year-old boy, Calvin, and his stuffed tiger, Hobbes, Calvin’s counterpart, fellow adventurer and all-round loyal friend. To understand the strip’s cultural impact, Director Joel Schroeder interviews many fans, who were deeply moved and inspired by Calvin and Hobbes.
DEAR MR. WATTERSON is a very well produced documentary, with clever editing and animation. Director Joel Schroeder does a great job keeping the pace swift and avoiding dull moments. The movie is entertaining and informative. Anyone who grew up reading Calvin and Hobbes will be met with the comforting nostalgia the comic strip offered. The movie celebrates childhood imagination. It also reminds viewers about the power stories can have over children’s hearts and minds. DEAR MR. WATTERSON is almost void of foul language, but one man blurts a few light obscenities and one light profanity. So, caution is advised, especially for younger children.