I was dreading my review of Wonder, the film adaptation of R. J. Palacio's novel by the same name, because I hate “feel good” movies. That is to say, I hate movies that use cheap, exploitative techniques to elicit emotions of sympathy, sentimentality, and superficial satisfaction from their audience. These films make me want to shoot myself because their premises rely on unbelievable or unrealistic events, cartoonish caricatures, and saccharine endings that leave me feeling nauseous rather than good. However, I was pleasantly surprised to discover that Wonder, despite relying heavily on such sentimentality, is a character-driven drama that is well worth the price of admission. Wonder focuses on one pivotal year in the life of one August “Auggie” Pullman, a ten year old boy who suffers from Treacher Collins syndrome, and his relationship with his immediate family and friends as he attends public school for the first time in his life.
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