Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Review: The Odd Life of Timothy Green


The Odd Life of Timothy Green opens in theaters today and offers as it's premise the tearjerker tale of a childless couple whose box of wishes buried in the garden grow into a real life boy. It tries to be heartfelt and touching and a triumph in belief that the little guy can change things, but unfortunately falls short of the mark.

The movie feels like a modern day Pinochio retold by Jodi Piccoult. While Picoult had nothing to do with the film (it is the brainchild of Ahmet Zappa [yes, that Zappa! Son of musician Frank Zappa]).

The movie cast is helmed by Jennifer Garner and Joel Edgerton, who play Jim and Cindy Green. The couple learns from their doctor they will never be able to conceive a child. To put the notion of a blood-related child to rest, they write down all the wonderful things they envision for their child, put them in a box and bury it in the garden. Later that evening, after a mysterious storm, Timothy shows up calling Jim and Cindy Mom and Dad.

This movie has heartwarming and funny elements. Timothy's honesty--drawing a picture of his Mom's boss, including her mustache. Timothy encouraging his parents to create a pen out of leaves, and the two working together to capture their dream of creation. 

While the film has some wonderful moments, these parts don't combine to make it a great film. For some reason, they just don't gel in the end. Part of that reason may be Garner, who I typically adore as an actress (I was a huge Alias fan, and have generally liked her movies). But, in this film, she seems stiff and nonmaternal, which is not exactly what you'd expect of someone who desperately wanted a child, and now being given one, seems a little too shocked to embrace it. And while shock may be the true nature of what a person who suddenly gets a child from the garden would feel, it wears thin if that's all you get in a film.

Overall, the movie is fine to see if you're in need of something to do (definitely matinee and bargain pricing only, though).  If you're thinking of this as a flick to take the whole family to, it's probably not for those under 8. It's a little long, and tends to meander from scene to scene, without a lot of excitement. So, not a real attention holder for the young kids.

That's it for today. And don't forget our contest. There is still time to enter.

-Hyattsville Mom

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