And finally the film is about growing up, letting go of our fears of being children, and what it means to become a man. A passage from I Corinthians read near the end of the film was a perfect fit and I thought it resonated nicely:
When I was a child, I spake as a child, I understood as a child, I thought as a child: but when I became a man, I put away childish things.
If I think about the film too hard, though, the whole thing becomes a little sinister. This boy creates a woman for himself in order to escape dealing with his family, sex and growing up. In a sense, he is always in control of this phony woman. Still, Lars and the Real Girl is really sweet and the performances and very smart script make it worth seeing. Gillespie handles the comedy deftly, and it finally becomes rather difficult not to feel some affection for the doll. She means so much to him and we become so fond of him, that is difficult to resist.