Sailing through a land of Hope: Movie review (A boy called sailboat)

Sometimes when a movie has ended, you are left with an indelible peace inside. A kind of emotion that leaves you numbed and you are smiling from your heart.

Well, A boy called Sailboat is one such kind.

The movie opens with a picturesque landscape where for miles all you see is sand and sky. As you come closer you realize it’s actually a sad picture. The vegetation has gone dry because of the drought-ridden land. People have abandoned the area, the shops in the nearest city have their shutters down.

Suddenly you find a weary house leaning on the support of a wooden pole, trying to stay upright. Inside, a family of 3 lives in the fear of the house crumbling down, with creaky floors scaring them every now and then.

Everything seems a bit sad and slow. 

But there’s a small boy (Julián Atocani Sánchez) with rosy cheeks and an endearing smile who narrates the entire story. He is obsessed with sailboats. 

Ironically, his home is almost 1000 miles away from the sea. But he doesn’t care about it, he is just an innocent dreamer who is always talking about his Abuela (grandmother). 

Wandering through the drought-ridden land, he stumbles across a guitar/ukulele dumped in a corner.

He is reminded of his Abuela who had taught him-

“You find the most important things when you are not looking”.

So he knew this guitar is somewhat special.

Though little, he thought of teaching the guitar to himself. His new ‘acquisition’ became an obsession when his Abuela told him to write a song on the guitar for her. And he knew he had to. 

He learned the basics of music through a compact disk which he borrowed from his school friend Mandy. The voice in the CD taught him to play the strings and produce a tune that matches the state of his heart. 

And there was no looking back. He had to write a song to his beloved Abuela that turned out to be ‘for everyone’. Thinking about it night and day, he often felt a keen sense of quiet inside, when he realizes

“Sometimes when you think about someone… Everything else goes to quiet”

And soon he had a song composed through the streets of quietness. 

Little by little, whosoever heard the little boy play was filled with the warmth of hope. His father with a cold look on his face was obsessed with being a cowboy raising horses. While his fate only offered him the task of looking after his soon-to-fall house by the stick. Even the boy’s mother had a passion. She cooked spicy meatballs but her plump physique lacked the confidence to go out in the public. 

All had their lives struck in a quagmire, where reality sat with heavy asses upon their hopes and dreams. But somehow the little boy with a song that wasn’t played out loud for us to hear, had struck the dead chords in people’s hearts.

His father became a dreamer again. While his mother had the courage to have her meat-balls shared with the audience of her son’s song.  

Whosoever heard the song melted with tears of hope and that of joy.

While the little boy oblivious of the fame was always thinking about his Abuela. Even while he had his dream boat placed in a workshop called Oasis in the middle of nowhere. So all he did was to look at it in peace and dream of having it one day.

All this while, his Abuela was asleep in a coma and he wasn’t able to sing his song for her. 

But, his fan followers were growing. Soon his school got an ear for his song. Everyone who heard the song experienced a transformation. So much so that even the sky had its tears down on the drought-ridden land.

But what about the grandmother? Well, when the little sailboat sang her the song, she was waiting eagerly for, she finally died in peace. And sailboat left the guitar by her bedside as he had completed her wish.

As the universe came together as an accomplice, his song helped his family came out of poverty so much so that his father had his car repaired, his house got a new and reliable stick as a support, and he? HE got his dream sailboat on a wagon right outside his house.

The movie ended a full circle when hopes got established where there were none and dreams got fulfilled. All life needed was a bit of melody, that though doesn’t come out loud but lies somewhere within our innocent hearts that fills us with warmth and hope of a world where our dreams keep us alive. 

Did you see the movie? How did you find it?


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