Like 'Amélie' - you could definitely sour yourself on its ideological implications, but its made with such earnestness that it feels pretty mean-spirited to cynically resist its charms. I must admit that the film will probably help keep masculinity studies in business for years to come. But as long as whiteness & maleness exist it's good that compassionate films like this do too.
"Yeah, well, for what it's worth, we've all been through the exact same thing at one point or another." Watch it, try hard not to identify with at least one character, try hard not to relate to the situations, try not to be happy when the highs arrive, and embrace the joy in failing on all those accounts. I could've sat through another hour, easily. A supremely endearing experience, highly recommended.
I think the fact that this film took 12 years to make is astonishing in itself. The narrative aspect of following a young boy throughout different stages in life, tackling the struggles he and his family face, especially his mother's struggles with keeping it all together to him establishing his own identity as a kid to teenager makes for an interesting take on a story that seems so basic yet complicated.