“Won’t You Be My Neighbor?” is a documentary that was released in select theaters June 8th. It follows Fred Rogers, the host of a TV show titled “Mister Roger’s Neighborhood” that aired from 1968 to 2001.
This film is very enjoyable. Even though I personally never grew up with the show, considering Fred Rogers passed away before I was born, from this movie, I can see that Fred was a man who was able to speak and relate to children, even through the seemingly invincible barrier of the TV screen.
“Won’t You Be My Neighbor?” also explores the idea that Fred Rogers was actually a troubled man. He had a fair number of issues. In the film, there is a scene showing a note written by Fred Rogers which describes his own insecurities. He wasn’t a flawless person, and this adds a new complex layer to the story.
The film is set up like a broken timeline, following Fred Rogers’ life while occasionally skipping back and forth, covering topics like rumors involving him. It also covers his childhood.
Another thing: Watch the trailer. The trailer is one of the best I have ever seen. It’s gut wrenching, but in a beautiful way. Seriously, watch it.
Verdict: “Won’t You Be My Neighbor?” is a wonderfully crafted reminder of a kind man who was loved by many children, and still loved to this day, for his ability to relate to children and speak the truth. In this day and age, we need somebody like Fred Rogers, which the film implies perfectly.
Overall score: 8.5/10.