1981 - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

1981 Reviews

Page 1 of 3
½ August 16, 2014
It's a nostagic trip...
July 6, 2014
Voilà un film tout à fait charmant. Il n'y a pas là de quoi tomber en bas de son divan, mais le tout fonctionne rondement.... Performance éblouissante de Sandrine Bisson, surtout cette mémorable scène dans la cuisine avec son fils Ricardo (Jean-Carl Boucher). Plaisir garantie pour un agréable voyage dans le temps.
May 19, 2013
Great coming of age movie!! My 13 year old loved it. It is a French film with subtitles. It seems to be based on the director's actual life in 1981. It is heart warming and enjoyable. The actor who plays young Ricardo is fantastic!! His facial expressions had me rolling with laughter, My daughter commented that it is 2013 and boys STILL talk like that. This one is going in my permanent collection.
½ March 20, 2013
When I recorded this on PBS, there were two things I did not realize:
1. That the movie was in French, and
2. How amazing this film would be!

1981 is a funny and touching story about a young boy's desperate attempt to fit in. Handling topics such as young friendships and crushes, this movie is consistently entertaining and enjoyable. Beautifully shot and an exceptionally talented young cast bring this movie together. I recommend!
August 26, 2012
Très dà (C)çu après le feedback positif que j'avais reçu sur ce film. Scà (C)nario prà (C)visible. Le père avair l'accent d'un arable plutôt que d'un italien.
December 18, 2011
Funny coming of age flick.
February 12, 2011
Un peu trop l'accent sur le distribution consommateur a mon gout. J'aurais aime qu'on explore un peu plus cette epoque...Ne serait-ce qu'au niveau musical....M'enfin, ce n'est pas mauvais la....Je dois avouer que le jeu du petit Trogi est tres bon. Il en est de meme pour les autres enfants du film...Quoiqu'a la fin, j'ai decroche....
September 6, 2010
correct mais sans éclat
½ September 3, 2010
The early life of Ricardo Crunchy, from the man himself.
August 25, 2010
What does it take to find a friend? What does it take to be a friend? What can you give, or give up, or give into in order to influence the acceptance of a friendship?

Ricardo Trogi (and you can pronounce his surname any way you want but you'll probably still get it wrong) has a stash of Playboys -- or so he says -- and suddenly the eighth grade click he wants in with are giving him their full attention. When you're young, you use what you have. Kids sharing Playboys probably go back to the invention of Playboys. Ricardo's problem is that he doesn't have anything -- the Playboys, the right clothes, a Walkman.

The character, director and narrator are the same. We see Ricardo as a boy, a simple materialistic, not-quite prepubescent teen who wants things he sees in catalogs but has to bug mom and dad for the money. As he navigates the monetary disciplines at home he also spins in a web of Junior High lies. The lies help him form bonds of friendship. Again, we go back to the strength of that tie.

The director/narrator looks back to a time when moving to a new school produces the most profound kind of social fear, when having your arm unnoticeably touched by a pretty girl caves you in to a months-long spree of hormonal rush, and when fear of being noticed in your family -- ie, mom and dad -- make you close your eyes at night and escape into dream lands of fantasy.

It's a fun story. And it is very playful, and quite cute, too -- but sometimes a little too much so. A little sap would have been good in places, but there's a lot of sap on the train with the rest of this fun. The film reminded me of a less-creepy Léolo or a happier, french-speaking Stand By Me, with a touch of the sibling rivalry of E.T. and a small hint of Roberto Benigni's bond with his son in Life Is Beautiful.

And while 1981 isn't exactly as good as any of the films I've just mentioned, it is worth watching, particularly for the last six or eight minutes which are entirely rewarding. Dead-on with real life, the way life works as a lying eighth grader who is bargaining in every relationship he has, the last few scenes close in such a strong way that it makes the proceeding 94 minutes worth the investment.

There's a curious, sad, and possibly quite true moral as Trogi shares about the Jr. Hi experience towards the end: "It happened 26 years ago and I still obsess about it. What was I thinking? The damn truth only works if everyone's telling it."

The quote feels like one of those truths where you wish it weren't true. The thought of it goes against faith in God, or the Bible, or even humanity in general. But you know what? Hate to say it -- he's right. If you cop to your pretend side and no one else joins in, you're not dragging things into the light which will somehow make your life more whole, real, or better -- you're only giving up yourself to liars who will eventually plow you down.

I'm walking away on a serious note to a film that really was light-hearted. I can't tell if that's me or the film. Maybe it's a little bit both.
August 24, 2010
La plus grande partie du film est un plaisir à écouter. Simple histoire et à la fois très efficace, Trogi nous amène dans sa famille de classe moyenne en 1981. La fin me parait un peu trop facile.
August 12, 2010
Even though I'm a french canadian, I don't like french canadian films usualy. BUT THAT ONE, THAT ONE WAS AWESOME! Seriously, I remondand it to all french speakers all over the world, its touching, funny and incridibly realistic. It might be hard to understand for people who are not from Quebec because of the big Quebec accent of the actors but you can always put subtitles just in cases. GREAT GREAT GREAT FILM, WATCH IT!
July 28, 2010
If you grew up in the 80s, you would love everything about this movie; and if you didn't, you would love it too. This coming-of-age movie is based on the real events as recalled by the filmmaker Ricardo Trogi himself.
½ July 18, 2010
�a m'a rappelé le roman C'est pas moi, je le jure!
½ July 4, 2010
1981 est un bon film avec de bons gags mais l'idée de départ est plus ou moins originale (y compris le dénouement). Le personnage de Ricardo est attachant et il y a des bons jeux d'acteur mais encore on dirait que e film est trop factuel.
½ May 28, 2010
Un bon ptit film quebecois !
April 5, 2010
Si le réalisateur pensait vraiment avoir eu une enfance qu'il pensait intéressante... Il est pas mal arrogant ! Film pas mal plate, qui a quelques moments, mais très boring...
March 7, 2010
At the time of seeing this film I was unaware of how amazing the film would be. Watching 1981, it made me laugh, feel sad, and plain happy. This is a film worth watching again and again. I would recommend this film for anyone else to watch and I don't think you would be disappointed.
March 7, 2010
Apres la nostalgie du debut des annees 80 et les symboles en lien avec «Le petit prince», je me suis endormie...
Page 1 of 3