Goodbye Christopher Robin

Today I went to see Goodbye Christopher Robin in cinemas, which is about the life of the real Christopher Robin (referred to as Billy by those closest to him). Despite the fact that it was also about the origin of Winnie the Pooh (which I once chose as the wallpaper for my room), it was a very sad story in my opinion. It was about a boy who couldn’t really be himself because he had to always be Christopher Robin, not Billy. He was forced into the limelight and made to take pictures. He once even had to take a picture next to a bear!

After doing some research online, as well, I found that the story was even sadder than what was seen in the films. He grew to loathe his father and, although he visited him occasionally, I don’t think he ever forgave him. His mother refused to see him once he married his first cousin because she was on bad terms with her brother, and kept refusing to until the day she died. He also had a daughter with cerebral palsy and a heart abnormality, which ultimately cost her to die earlier than she should have, at the age of 56. I think this was probably linked to the fact he married a relative, as it is usually bad for the children’s health if you do so.

I had always had suspicions that the Winnie the Pooh characters were metaphors for mental illnesses, but after watching this film, I have come to the conclusion that they were emotions that A.A Milne felt when serving during the war. He obviously suffered from post-traumatic stress disorder. Although this was never mentioned, I think it makes sense, and is a clever way to address war in a subtle manner, as he always wanted to write something anti-war. He did eventually do a proper book on it, but before then, Winnie the Pooh was a way to express how he felt.

I really liked the film because it gave insight into the origins of a well-loved story, and I remember it being a big part of my childhood. It was still sad though, and Billy/Christopher Robin did get bullied for it at school, until he took up boxing. I think if his parents had shown more affection to him, maybe they wouldn’t have had such low relations later on in life. I think it is every child’s dream to be the main character in a book, but the fame that comes with it probably isn’t. It’s overwhelming and isolating. This film made that clear.

Thanks for reading!

2 thoughts on “Goodbye Christopher Robin

  1. I was a massive fan of Winnie The Pooh when I was younger, probably far past the age when I should have been. I related massively to Eeyore, and I think I understand why now.
    I’ve been wanting to see this film since it came out in cinemas but they’re a very anxiety-inducing environment for me, so I’ll wait until it’s on sale as a DVD, but it was really interesting to hear what it’s actually about. It makes sense that someone ends up resenting others for the way their life turned out when they’re forced to live in a way they despise. I think I might go and research this some more myself now; it sounds really interesting, though unfortunate at the time!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Yeah! I relate a lot to Piglet, which I think symbolises anxiety, Eeyore is also me a bit though. TBH, most are. There’s even theories that little Roo is autistic. The screen we saw it in was very small, which was nice, and quite cosy, because it was during the time people work, which is usually when i see films, so not many people and dim lighting. I have to say though: most of the people who saw it were in the older generation, because obviously it was a massive part of their life before we even existed. it’s quite cool really. I think they should do more films like this, about the lives behind the stories.


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