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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars packs a punch, May 6 2010
By 
J. Pot "the professor" (Ontario) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Mary and Max (DVD)
alright - don't be fooled by the claymation format - this is no film for little kids.
i study disability issues and knew it was about asperger's and wanted to see if it would work for teaching disability related issues in university. it certainly would, but it is also so much more. mary and max are both introduced as lonely outsiders in their respective countries - mary b/c her parents are sad and not very nice so she is a little girl with no love in her life; max b/c his parents have passed and he lives alone trying to grapple with the way that asperger's affects how he experiences the world. both of them are keenly aware that they are not like other people and i guess that is the main through-story here - that being different can be very painful - but that it is not so much intrinsic to how you are not normal as it is an issue of how other people/ society rejects you. without giving the story away, max for instance is upset with mary at one point when she slips and write about how she hopes to help find a cure for asperger's ... this seemed to betray all the trust that max had that she accepted him as he is.
what did i love about it? their years-long correspondance is quirky and sweet without being saccharine - the kinds of wee gifts they send each other are just fantastic in their simple sincerity. the way the writers channeled a youthful simplicity reminded me of bill cosby - i always wondered - how does he remember so much of what it's like to be a kid? that mix of confusion and certainty.
i also like that the story is not rushed - the timespan is long and many of the aspects of la vie quotidienne (everyday life) happen and they effect the narrative while not necessarily directly moving it forward or sideways ... reminds me of a phrase by sherri ortner - "life impinges" - like things don't always just work out how you plan. it's not a predictable film in any way.
being someone who works alot in the disabilty field - i like also the treatment of impairment here - hard to put a finger on it, but i think i'd say, that the impairment and the resulting social disabilities both of them face, are relevant but they are not the only point. the point is more about difference in general - disabilty seems to be a vehicle for dealing with that subject.
the ending is satisfying if unusual ... it did leave me wanting to know about "part 2" ... what happens next so i think that's a good sign that i really cared about the characters!

what was off putting? well this is not really a critique but a personal comment - it is quite a dark film and (spoiler alert) there are quite a number of deaths and bad things that happen ... so just be ready for that i guess. sometimes i thought that the many deaths wasn't necessary to tell the same story but then again i thought ok maybe that is important - it's not a story of ugly duckling turns beautiful and everything is fine.

i think if you prepared a class properly for viewing it, it could generate alot of discussion about disability matters but also about belonging, loneliness, friendship, social norms, difference, and, letter writing.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars The M&M Among Us, March 16 2010
This review is from: Mary and Max (DVD)
Mary and Max

This outstanding Australian claymation pokes fun at the foibles of society, not just the child or adult. Mary has to deal with her uncaring family and cold surroundings she is growing up in; Max, being a Jewish single adult and atheist, tries to adapt to a metropolitan environment without giving up his idiosyncracies as a form of autism. They are distant in age and location but find comforting friendship with each other. The story is sweet and sad.

Viewers would identify with some of the depicted human foibles and may ponder their own idiosyncracies, subconscious autism or difficulties in coping with conformity and individualism. In life, friendship is universal and it is based on mutual understanding, acceptance and trust, which one needs as it is precious and should be treasured.

The DVD could even be more enjoyable if a short documentary on the behind-the-scene making of "Mary & Max" is included. It would help the audience to further their appreciation of this product from its maker's perspective.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars surprenant!, Feb. 2 2010
By 
Samuella (Otterburn Park, Qubec Canada) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Mary and Max (DVD)
À mon avis mériterais l'oscar cette année en film d'animation. Que de talent, je me suis assez vite attachée aux personnages de Mary et Max, un film profond,touchant. Je ne le regarderais pas avec de jeunes enfants, même si c'est un film d'animation, il ne vise pas un jeune public. J'ai aussi une bien meilleure compréhension du syndrome d'Asperger(autisme léger)malgré que les difficultées de Max ne semble pas si légères dans la vie quotidienne.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A funny, poignant, engaging study in human psychology, Feb. 10 2013
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This review is from: Mary and Max (DVD)
The absolute honesty of the characters, their dreams, their fears, their hurtful pasts takes them far beyond animation. All of us in one way or another can identify with Mary and Max. All of us have been teased, have suffered from issues of self-esteem and loneliness, have or have not fulfilled our dreams. What makes this movie so palatable as it deeply probes human psychology, is the wonderful humour. I would have given it five stars except that it did seem a little longer than necessary. Even so, the ending is well worth waiting for.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars When life hands you lemons..., Sept. 22 2012
This review is from: Mary and Max (DVD)
The amazing thing about this movie is that no one is victimized by their life's challenges. Each character takes accountability for their individual happiness in the way that works for them without blaming someone else for their situation - a nice change. I found this movie poignant, inspirational and truly a masterpiece in the weaving of many of life's darker issues into a tale that flows flawlessly. The characters are funny, endearing and memorable. Not a movie for small children due to the adult themes addressed. A must see.Mary and Max
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars You must get this, April 8 2011
By 
This review is from: Mary and Max (DVD)
Short, simple, touching story with an interesting style.
Not for kids necessarily, the story treats of alcohol abuse, mental illness, suicide and homosexuality.
Not that these things are not suitable for childrens ,it depends on the type of parent you are i guess but whatever it is it's treated from a kids point of view, therefore very innocent and genuine reflection of certain realities of our world!
Beautiful!
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4.0 out of 5 stars Hungry Hearts, Aug. 27 2013
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This review is from: Mary and Max (DVD)
Based on a true story, a twenty year relationship, that starts with a little girl's need for a friend. Lots of humour, sadness and joy. In playful animation, with much empathy. For anyone who enjoys a rich story of human feelings.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Mary and Max, Aug. 14 2013
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This review is from: Mary and Max (DVD)
Excellent movie, Excellent Service, Received the movie in two days after ordering it.... If you have not yet watched this movie put it on your list of movies you want to see.... You will enjoy it
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Mary and Max
Mary and Max (DVD - 2010)
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