Although this review is a bit late, post Academy Awards, I still feel the need to express the incredible quality of Boyhood. The attention to detail is immaculate and made me feel like I was reliving my childhood. As someone who grew up in this time period the film really strikes my nostalgia nerve, but is written in such a way so that anyone who it a son or a daughter or a brother or sister or a mother or father can relate to it.
From this point on, this review will contain spoilers, and is meant only for those who have seen the film in its entirety.
As many know, Linklater directed this film over the course of twelve years, filming for a few weeks every summer until they had a detailed telling of the twelve years of boyhood that encompass a young mans life. Throughout this incredible story Linklater highlights specific milestones that every boy goes through. The film did a wonderful job of touching on important events that occurred throughout the twelve year span, and used pop music as a brilliant method of auditory storytelling that gave the audience an idea of what year it was every time there was a time transition. We see Mason (the protagonist) go through major moves, his mother remarrying and divorcing multiple times, and having his own trials and tribulations with the women in his romantic life.
The only reason I did not give this film a complete 10/10 was because I believe Linklater overlooked a significant milestone. In adolescence, there is a point in every boy's life where he is offered drugs and must make the decision whether or not he wants to take that path or refuse. The choice itself is irrelevant, it is merely the presentation of that choice, that milestone, that is a very critical moment in every boy's life. The idea of boyhood is all about making choices that will change the course of your life. Whether or not Mason chose to partake in that culture was his choice and the choice itself does not diminish his ability to experience boyhood. When Mason turns fifteen however, we see him climb out the back of a station wagon after taking one last puff off a joint. When he enters his house he openly tells his mother that he's a little stoned and heads to bed. We don't get to see the point at which he makes the decision to smoke, we just see his friend off him one more hit and then he exits the vehicle. It was merely brushed over and I believe Linklater should have delved further into this subject as it is such an important milestone in every boy's life.
Aside from this matter, I found Boyhood an incredible telling of life growing up as a boy in the 2000s, and the absolute epitome of a coming of age story. All in all, one of the best films I have ever seen and is sure to go down in history for its unique simplicity and undeniable accuracy. This film will take you on a incredible journey through a realistic telling of boyhood that you won't soon forget.