Oddly Realistic, But Still Predictable Disney

It’s new, it’s Disney, and it’s… odd?  Yes, you’ve guessed it my friends, my latest review is on the latest kid movie The Odd Life of Timothy Green starring Jennifer Garner, Joel Edgerton and CJ Adams.  Now if you’re just tuning into the end of summer movies, you may not know what the plot of this film is about.  In a nutshell, it’s about Cindy (Garner) and Jim (Edgerton) Green, a small town couple who are unable to have children.  After exhausting all their options, they dream up their ideal child and bury their ideas in the dirt as a sign of moving on.  However, fate has other plans for them as the couple are soon blessed with a young boy who shows up in their house.  This is no ordinary boy mind you, but instead one who has many interesting secrets that will change the couple’s world forever.

I know it sounds strange doesn’t it, but if you’re like me you got hooked on the well edited trailer, which I thought had given everything away.  Luckily Disney had a few tricks up their sleeves and managed to throw in a few things I wasn’t expecting.  That is always a nice surprise.  Although I mainly got hooked in by the Kelly Clarkson song, I was also excited to see Garner and Edgerton team up and play this couple.  Both characters I felt were great picks for their parts as the awkward parents who wanted to do everything right in their new experience, but made some blunders.  Garner in particular played the overprotective mother well and seemed to almost be using her personal experiences to guide her characterAs for Edgerton, again he plays his character well as the father who wants to avoid making the same mistakes his dad made.  His character, like in Warrior, has plenty of locked up emotions and family issues to keep the dram interesting.  And once again he manages to have well timed lines that help either drive home the message, or make you laugh at some clever humor.  Yet the character who made the film the most fun for me, was guess who?  That’s right Timothy Green!  Adams had the perfect image for the shy, kind, and friendly boy who doesn’t have to say much to be entertaining.  Despite the lack of dialog, Adams managed to move, smile, and say just enough to entertain the audience and bring out the appropriate emotions.  CJ had a natural cuteness that will make the girls go wild, and his childlike innocence make his shyness more realistic, relatable, and magical to help the movie continue to come alive.

The Odd Life of Timothy Green is not just about acting though, as there are plenty of other qualities that make this movie worth a try.  The biggest reason would be the valuable morals and lessons the movie presents to the audience.  Once again Disney finds a way to stand on the soap box and share their feelings on certain topics; however in this movie the presentation is fantasticInstead of filling the movie with overacted speeches, brazen monologues, or plotless romantic kissing, the direction team decided to bring real life issues to the table.  Throughout the entire movie, the trio faces dilemmas and problems that are relatable to the audience in some way.  While you may have seen relatable problems in past movies, this movie does things a little differently by presenting both good and bad sides to the problem and the ways to face your problems.  Even more impressive is that not all these problems end happily.  Yes it’s always nice to see a happy ending, but the randomness of this film helps keep things fresh, entertaining, and realistic. Thus as a warning to those who are prone to crying, bring a box of tissues as I got a little misty eyed near the end.    The thing that struck home the most for this reviewer thought was the message about being odd.  I can’t lie I’m strange, and can sometimes be a little weird in the eyes of my friends.  This movie though accepts weirdness though, and emphasizes that slight differences are not something to put down.  Instead these differences are to be appreciated, assuming they don’t involve any destructive behavior towards others, and can help people see the world in a different way.  So for all those who are different and scorned, take a look at this movie and hopefully get the same message I did from it.

Now let us hit some negatives on this movie that subtract from its score.  For one thing there is some really hard hitting moments that can leave you feeling depressed, sad, or angry in this film.  As a result emotional time bombs might want to attend this movie with friends or alone depending on your style.  This film is also somewhat predictable and one can start to pick up on things, especially the ending, from the first deed Timothy does.  Although the movie is funny in places, don’t expect a comedy full of one liners and slapstick moments.  Yes there are a few awkward conversations and movements that bring up a laugh, but that’s about it as this movie takes more of the spiritual drama side.  Other than that there really isn’t that much excitement, or suspenseful drama that seems to be the trend these days, which makes this movie a little bland.  While I can live without the teenage paranormal drama, some audiences may just be bored with this movie and miss the messages it presents.

Odd Life is a good, cute, fun movie, but it’s not great.  The acting is good, the messages are solid, and the emotion is there.  However, the blandness and predictability may leave you wanting more for the price of the ticket.  Nevertheless this movie is more Netflix than theater worthy and I only encourage audience members with families, desires to see realistic dramas, or those wanting a good lesson on oddness to head to the theaters.  My scores for the movie are below:

Comedy/Drama/Fantasy:  7.5-8.0

Movie Overall: 7.0

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