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Back to the Hundred Acre Wood: ‘Christopher Robin’ is a tear-jerking walk down memory lane

A heartwarming tale that is sure to make even adult viewers cry, “Christopher Robin” is a live-action feature that was released in early August.

In a time when Winnie-the-Pooh is not as popular for younger audiences in this era of vast programming options, the film is a great way to introduce kids to the book and television shows that have been cherished for generations.

The movie is not based one of A.A. Milne’s books but it proves to be a sweet adaptation of them, showcasing the rekindling of a once-lost beloved relationship between Christopher Robin and his friend, Pooh.

Christopher Robin is now a grown family man with a wife and young daughter. He is stressed out about his job and is engulfed in work. The company he works for demands an innovation in their suitcases or else a lot of employees will be laid off due to low profitability.

Christopher Robin, who cares for his coworkers below him, works tirelessly to find a solution. But in the midst of his efforts, he neglects his wife and child. His wife becomes irritated with his change in amiability and loss of his lightheartedness. One night, his daughter, Madeline, asks him to read her a story, but to her disappointment he reads her something from an encyclopedia.

The family is becoming somewhat distant from Christopher Robin, but hope to draw closer on a weekend getaway to his childhood cottage. To the disapproval of his wife, Christopher cancels last-minute due to a work deadline. Madeline and her mother go on their own.

Before Madeline left, she uncovered some figures and illustrations that her father had made and played with as a child. They were Winnie-the-Pooh and his friends from the Hundred Acre Wood. She was fascinated by the drawings, amazed that her father once had a childlike imagination.  When she asked her father about them, he brushed them off as nonsense.

Amazingly, Christopher Robin returns from work one day and rests on a bench near his home.  Little does he know that Winne-the-Pooh lies on the other side. They eventually face each other, shocked by the other’s presence. Despite a few decades gone past, Pooh recognizes Christopher Robin right away. Christopher Robin thinks he has gone mad and that there is no way that could really be Pooh. After all, wasn’t Pooh just a figment of his imagination?

Christopher takes Pooh into his home and lets him stay for a bit while he figures out how to get him back to the Hundred Acre Wood. He is still in distress about the work situation and stays for long hours to reach a solution. However, he has to get Pooh back before anyone notices a bear who can talk. Christopher decides to pack his work into his briefcase and brings Pooh along as a “stuffed animal” for the train ride and rest of the commute to his old cottage.

He soon realizes that Pooh is very real and the Hundred Acre Wood is as he left it. There is trouble, though, as Pooh cannot find his friends. Piglet, Kanga, Roo, Rabbit, Tigger and Eeyore are nowhere to be found. They assume the worst: it must have been the Heffalumps and the Woozles that got them!

Eventually, they find all their friends, who were hiding out because they thought the Heffalumps were out to get them.

Along the way, Christopher Robin gets frustrated and says mean things the bear of very little brain. Pooh is especially distraught because Christopher promised he would never forget his childhood friends. But Christopher left his childhood behind, and with it, all memories of the Hundred Acre Wood. It’s up to our disoriented hero to find what little magic he has left from his youth and make amends to his friends stuffed with fluff.

“Christopher Robin” is a real tear-jerker of a film. It is good for children because of its creative elements, but holds an important message for us, too. Never get too focused on work. There are parts of life that mean more than that work deadline.

Work can be made up, but people and moments can never be replaced. Live in the now, cherish those you love, and never, ever forget who once made you happy.  


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Catherine Rose, Author

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