Based on the bestselling book by Judith Viorst, this 2014 movie follows the exploits of a moody 12-year-old Alexander (Ed Oxenbould) as he experiences with the terrible and horrible day of his young life and wonders if bad things only happen to him because his family doesn’t even care because all their lives are so perfect. But he discovers he’s not alone when his dad Ben Cooper (Steve Carell), mum Nina (Jennifer Garner) and family live through their own terrible – and hilarious – day. They discover how even on rotten days,the family can grow closer:
- There’s no such thing as a bad day. It depends on how you look at it.
- You are the captain of your own ship. Sail it with positivity.
- Anything worth doing is worth doing well.
- This day is not ruined because this day is not over yet.
- Some days are just bad. Nothing can fix it. You’ve got to have the bad days so that you’ll love the good days.
- Even terrible days aren’t so bad when you’re surrounded by people you love.
- When there’s a smile in your heart, there’s no better way to start. Think of all the joy you’ll find when you leave your past behind. (Part of a song lyric.)
This movie is full of laughter and fun moments. I burst into laughter in at least three different places. Lesser-known actors did a good job as Alexander’s older brother Anthony (Dylan Minnette) and older sister Kelly (Kevin Dorsay). I wonder where the casting people found the baby and how difficult it must have been to get the baby to act or even cooperate. Then, there are lots of animals – two emus, a kangaroo, Wallabies, cockatoos, an owl and an alligator (because Alexander is obsessed with everything Australian.)
There were probably stunt doubles in the more challenging scenes (like “flying”) and special effects, but they came across as authentic. It was an enjoyable movie.