So it was actually on Thursday evening that I went and saw Home in the theater. With the exception of a fantastic woman and her two kids, I had the theater entirely to myself. The other woman was pretty fantastic and we chatted about our jobs and such before the movie started and her two kids were both quite well-behaved, and highly entertaining.
Home is a movie about a group of aliens called Boov who are generally a cowardly race, constantly on the run from the Gorg, another alien race who have destroyed a number of the planets the Boov once occupied. One of the Boov, Oh, doesn’t really fit in very well with his people and he is notorious amongst his people for making mistakes. Oh eventually encounters a human girl, Tip, who avoided the Boov relocation program and is waiting for her mom to return. Tip is clever, smart, fun, sassy, and has fantastic taste in music. She also takes care of her cat, Pig.
I was a little confused by the beginning of this movie, as it didn’t appear as though the people of Earth put up any sort of fight at all, but I’m pretty sure that was just the adult in me who refuses to accept that we wouldn’t fight back, no matter how potentially squishy and non-hazardous the invading aliens appeared, or how “comfortable” our required living areas were. So it took me a little bit of extra work for me to suspend my views on the real, gritty world in which I live in order to appreciate the non-violent intent of this movie.
As Tip and Oh meet, they don’t start out liking each other. There is a lot of distrust and a lot of disgust. They decide to work together because they have common goals and neither wants to be captured by the rest of the Boov. Tip is afraid that if she loses her freedom of movement that she’ll never find her mom and Oh is positive that the Boov will extinguish him if they catch him. Tip is a fantastic representation of the best of humanity. She works with Oh, even after he almost ditches her. She waits for him when she could have left. She is loyal and fulfills her promises, even when Oh doesn’t appear to want to always keep his promises. She takes care of Pig and she is responsible with her mom’s car, as well as thoughtful in grabbing her mom’s present. She teaches Oh about being human, including driving and dancing. She’s smart and did well in classes like math and science, which should always be encouraged.
Oh wants to have friends. He wants to be social with other Boov. He decorates his new home and invites all his neighbors. He desperately craves a sense of community that he doesn’t have. He makes mistakes and is curious, which are traits the Boov do not encourage. The Boov, as a whole, seem to have a huge amount of anxiety and fear in their lives. I’ve struggled a bit with anxiety myself in the past year and the small amount of exposure I’ve endured with anxiety is amazingly large amounts of no fun. So the fact that the entire race is anxiety-ridden is something to think about, especially since they would have been dealing with that same anxiety and lack of community for their entire lives.
Naturally, Tip and Oh learn a lot from each other and eventually become friends. Oh learns to trust Tip and follow her towards danger instead of running and hiding from his problems or things he is terrified of. Both Oh and Tip use their uniqueness to work together to save Earth from the invasion of the Gorg. It’s a heartwarming story about friendship, family, and how you can do amazing things if you find someone who is also not quite good at fitting in like you.
So I guess the underlying moral of this story is that if you find someone who is weird like you and you become friends, work to keep them in your lives because without them, your life will be lonely and not nearly as fulfilling as it would be if you had someone to hang out with and spend time with. If someone excepts you as you are but still wants to help you learn and grow, that person and that friendship is golden and worth more than anything else you can imagine. Also, if you have the strength to face your fears, your life will likely get a lot better. But if you don’t have the strength on your own, find people willing to stand with you or for you and be a friend to them.
Overall, I’d say this movie is a high three or a low four on my rating scale. I will happily buy it when it comes out and probably watch it repeatedly. I think the only reason I have for not giving it a solid four is because the real world isn’t like this. In the real world, when you find someone who is an amazing friend, they’ll eventually ditch and you’ll be on your own again. Everyone is temporary and it sucks. But that’s why we have movies and entertainment venues such as this – to live in an imaginary world, if only for a few hours – where friendship matters and the people you care about will be willing to fight for you and care about you, too.