Richard Linklater’s Boyhood is an unusual film and, like much of Linklater’s oeuvre, a personal one. The writer/director filmed the movie in increments over an astonishing period of 12 years, focusing on a main character (Ellar Coltrane) as he ages naturally from 7 to 18.
“I was trying to capture how you feel when you’re growing up. You’re just sort of older. There are no big demarcation signs,” Linklater tells The New York Times about the film’s unusual narrative arc. “When you look at your own life, it’s these odd little things. It’s like, Oh, my high school graduation — don’t remember that. But I do remember hanging out with this guy and drinking…You remember the things around the big moments, and that’s how I wanted the film to feel.”
Linklater only had a rough outline when he started shooting, scripting the rest as he went along. “I didn’t know exactly what was going to happen in the future,” he says, “but I knew something was going to happen.”
The end result became a reflection on time and aging, as much as a coming-of-age story. “Time is the lead character,” Linklater says definitively.
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