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Rated PG for brief language and mild thematic elements
By Chris Jalil
posted Aug 24, 2012 - 9:14:36am
Disney productions have a glowing reputation for simultaneously entertaining children and enthralling adults. The writing/directing duo of Ahmet Zappa and the aptly-named Peter Hedges hits a home run with the fantastic (in more ways than one) film The Odd Life of Timothy Green, making good on both of these often impractical promises.
Quickly introducing the Greens’ (Jennifer Garner and Joel Edgerton) unfortunate circumstances to the viewer, the opening sequence sees them struggling to cope with a harsh truth: They cannot bear a child. The cinematography brilliantly portrays their increasing grief as transitions between scenes of awkward silence and those of obvious denial leave the observer in a similar state of discomfort. Thankfully, Jim’s (Edgerton) therapeutic plan to pen a child “for one day” results in unexpected success: They plant their wishes for a child, and yes, a child grows from their garden.
Popcorn represents how fun a film is to watch—how funny it is, how exciting the special effects are, and how enjoyable the story is on repeated viewings. The perfect popcorn movie would be one that never got stale regardless of how many times you’ve seen it.
Timothy Green’s message resonates loudest, however. Hedges and Zappa’s family flick addresses the evils of a conformist society, proudly taking a stance for individuality and screaming the importance of childhood. Their poignant commentary through detestable displays of bullying, both on the part of adults and children, cleverly cries for reform. And in a world where parents find themselves all too invested in their son/daughter’s future, a gentle reminder to let kids be kids is always welcome.
The story is, of course, a pinch predictable, but an uplifting tale like this is well worth its price. So regardless of your age or walk of life, remember the child that interchanged fantasy and reality, and embrace the beauty that is Timothy Green.
Stars & Popcorn grade: 4 stars, 4 popcorn.
— Jalil is a movie reviewer for Stars & Popcorn. Jalil lives in Gainesville, where he attends the University of Florida and is pursuing a bachelor’s degree in English.
Sponsored by Liebe Entertainment Group, Marketplace 8. Click here to see showtimes for The Odd Life of Timothy Green
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