The Odd Life of Timothy Green (2012)

Director: Peter Hedges

Writer: Peter Hedges (Screenplay) Ahmet Zappa (Story)

Starring: Jennifer Garner, Joel Edgerton, CJ Adams, Odeya Rush, Shohreh Aghdashloo, Rosemarie DeWitt, David Morse

 

Plot: A childless couple bury a box in their backyard, containing all of their wishes for an infant. Soon, a child is born, though Timothy Green is not all that he appears.


Tagline – He’s a force of nature.

Runtime: 1 Hour 45 Minutes

 

There may be spoilers in the rest of the review

 

Verdict: Beautiful Fantasy

 

Story: The Odd Life of Timothy Green starts as Cindy (Garner) and Jim (Edgerton) a married couple learn they can’t have children, in one last night of accepting the truth, they write a list of ideas that would have been their dream child place it in a box and bury it in their garden.

That night something unexpected happens, when the couple learn that Timothy (Adams) comes to life and the couple must deal with being a parent for the first time. Timothy goes through the childhood problems where he meets Joni (Rush), but he is keeping a secret from everybody.

 

Thoughts on The Odd Life of Timothy Green

 

Characters – Cindy is the artistic wife that works in a gallery, she is devastated about not being able to have children, once Timothy turns up she wants to give him everything she wanted to for a child. Jim is a factory worker that sees Timothy as a chance to be a father he never had. Timothy is the boy that appears one night, he has all the good the parents want in their child and shows that he is going help the depressed parents that are facing a childless future, he inspires the people around him, while dealing with the everyday problem in life of a young boy. Joni is the girl that Timothy meets and accepts him for who he is because she knows she is just as different as him, they bring out the best in both.

PerformancesJennifer Garner has a reputation for being one of the best parental figures in acting today, she shows us just why she is always picked. Joel Edgerton is strong here too as we believe he is the one that is seeing his chance to be a father in his character. CJ Adams as Timothy is wonderful showing the innocence his character requires to make a difference in the world. Odeya Rush brings everything needed for the rebellious outcast character that has the heart of gold to give to the right person.

StoryThe story here follows a couple that believe they can never have a child only to get an unexpected surprise when one arrives, one they created, they are given new hope as they see new horizons in their lives and the ones he touches. This is a story I didn’t see coming, it felt original in the way everything was handled and shows just how anyone can walk into somebody’s life and change it forever. When it comes to the child learning aspects of a story, this is everything we have seen before, but the fantasy elements make the biggest impact on this story. the story does play into your feelings and will be one that you don’t forget easily.

Comedy/FantasyThe comedy used in the film is standard material, you will get a laugh when you need to even if we are looking at the more serious moments often. The fantasy comes from Timothy as they learn more about his true presence in the world.

SettingsThe film is set in a small town which shows how close the community is when it comes to dealing with their own problems, this helps with the outcome of the film and helps us see how everyone knows each other.


Scene of the Movie –
The leaves.

That Moment That Annoyed Me The football match is poorly shot.

Final ThoughtsThis is a delightful fantasy film that will deliver on the feels, you will see the direction it is heading in, but you will want to be part of the journey.

 

Overall: Delightful.

Rating

 

 

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Franchise Weekend – Elektra (2005)

Director: Rob Bowman

Writer: Zak Penn, Stuart Zicherman, M.Raven Metzner (Screenplay) Frank Miller (Comic Book)

Starring: Jennifer Garner, Goran Visnjic, Kristen Zien, Will Yun Lee, Cary-Hiroyuki Tagawa, Terrence Stamp

 

Plot: Elektra the warrior survives a near-death experience, becomes an assassin-for-hire, and tries to protect her two latest targets, a single father and his young daughter, from a group of supernatural assassins.


Tagline – She’s the last thing that stands between good and evil.

Runtime: 1 Hour 37 Minutes

 

There may be spoilers in the rest of the review

 

Verdict: Generic and Average

 

Story: Elektra starts as Elektra (Garner) has survived the events of the Daredevil movie and is now an assassin to hire, her reputation strikes fear into the enemies that learn she is coming. Elektra’s latest job involves killing Mark (Visnjic) and his daughter Abby (Zien) only for her to have a change of heart.

Elektra must now protect them from a group of assassins led by Kirigi (Lee) who is trying to collect a treasure that can see the secret organisation known as the Hand finally gain power.

 

Thoughts on Elektra

 

Characters – Elektra is an assassin for hire, she is known around the world as the one that can get any job done. Her latest job tests her because she doesn’t want to kill a child, this brings her employers after her and she finds herself into the middle of battle between two different factions, to add something else to the mix, she sudden has OCD too. Mark Miller is the father of Abby who is doing everything he can to keep her and her secret safe. Abby is a teenager that people want dead, she has a secret which could bring her to be a threat to anyone, but must remain safe. Kirigi leads the assassins that are after Abby, working for The Hand, he is supernatural in ability along with his assassins.

PerformancesJennifer Garner is one of the few highlights in this film, she has been doing this style of role for a while and steps in effortlessly even if she is not meant to have enjoyed making the film. Goran Visnjic and Kirsten Zien both struggle to make any sort of impact in this film, while Will Yun Lee does the best he can with his role.

StoryThe story here follows Elektra in one of her own adventures as an assassin for hire, only this time she goes against the deal, so this is the typical assassin with a heart fighting back against her employers, only we end up dealing in supernatural assassins, which takes away anything we would have seen from the human enemy side of Daredevil. This is a by the book movie you know can right the checklist out of how things are going to unfold without being challenged, while this isn’t going to make you surprised by any sort of twists in the ideas.

Action/AdventureThe action is down to the fights which are played out well with a martial arts base to them, the supernatural elements do add small parts to the fights though.

SettingsThe film does take us to a couple of settings which are more open instead of being in a big city, this is fine, as it plays into Elektra’s back story.

Special EffectsThe effects used are basic and do make for believable elements when it comes to how the villains are killed and use their own abilities.


Scene of the Movie –
Snakes.

That Moment That Annoyed Me The random OCD element added for no reason.

Final ThoughtsThis is a simple to watch assassin going against their employer’s movie, it keeps most things safe, with entertaining action when turned too.

 

Overall: Simple to watch.

Rating

 

 

Franchise Weekend – Daredevil (2003)

Director: Mark Steven Johnson

Writer: Mark Steven Johnson (Screenplay)

Starring: Ben Affleck, Jennifer Garner, Colin Farrell, Michael Clarke Duncan, Jon Favreau, Scott Terra, Ellen Pompeo

 

Plot: A man blinded by toxic waste which also enhanced his remaining senses fights crime as an acrobatic martial arts superhero.


Tagline – A man without hope, is a man without… fear.

Runtime: 1 Hour 43 Minutes

 

There may be spoilers in the rest of the review

 

Verdict: Simple Origin Film

 

Story: Daredevil starts when young Matt Murdock becomes blind through a freak accident only to see his other sense bring him new life and after his father’s death, he dedicates his life to help fight for the ones who need it. Now an adult Matt (Affleck) he has become a lawyer to help people the mob victimise, if he doesn’t get justice in a courtroom, he puts on the mask to become Daredevil and eliminates the threat.

The Kingpin (Duncan) runs the town and he keeps everyone working for him under control, tired of Daredevil causing problems, he hires Bullseye (Farrell). With a new love interest in warrior Elektra (Garner) the daughter of a billionaire, the sides all come together to give Matt his toughest battle yet.

 

Thoughts on Daredevil

 

Characters – Matt Murdock was blinded as a child and saw his father killed by the mob. He dedicates his life to stopping the mob in a courtroom and if that fails, he will take justice into his own hands. A trained warrior who uses sound to visualise his enemies believing that revenge in the best way to solve the problems. Elektra is the daughter of a billionaire who grabs Matt’s attention, she is trained to protect herself and after her father is killed, she sets out on her own mission for revenge. Bullseye is an assassin for hire, he never misses, well that is his skill, he can turn anything into a weapon and enjoys the competition. The Kingpin is the man that runs the neighbourhood’s crime ring, he will kill anyone that gets in his way and doesn’t care who he kills.

PerformancesBen Affleck in the leading role is good for what he needs to do, there might be a few questions over the blind scenes, but for the fights he can handle himself well. Jennifer Garner has the look and experience in the combat roles, she doesn’t have much to do outside of this though. Michael Clarke Duncan in a villainous role where he is bigger than his opponent is an easy and good choice, while Colin Farrell seems to love playing this role.

StoryThe story shows us how Daredevil rose up to take on the biggest crime boss in the city of New York, he does have to question where he lays in the battle, will he cross the lines the villains do and get revenge for his father’s death. this might seem like a pretty safe origin story which is all we want at times. We do keep most of the story around human enhancements over superpowers which is good to see to because at times we are facing anything from Gods to aliens. The way this story is told does make it feel like an adult Spider-man though.

Action/AdventureThe action in the film is entertaining, we have a couple of close combat sequences bringing in an Eastern fight style to the Western heroes mentality which was different at the time compared to what the other comic book films were giving us.

SettingsThe film is set in New York city which is always known for the high crime levels which would make a vigilante believable.

Special EffectsThe effects are interesting because we get the idea of how Matt can see being the main use of effects which does feel unique in style and does add that little something to the fights.


Scene of the Movie –
I never miss.

That Moment That Annoyed Me The blind scenes don’t look natural.

Final ThoughtsThis is a film that gets a lot more stick that it deserves if we are being honest, it is a simple to watch comic book movie that gets what it needs to right and doesn’t go wildly over the top.

 

Overall: Entertaining and watchable comic book movie.

Rating

 

 

Love, Simon (2018)

Director: Greg Berlanti

Writer: Elizabeth Berger, Isaac Aptaker (Screenplay) Becky Albertalli (Novel)

Starring: Nick Robinson, Jennifer Garner, Josh Duhamel, Katherine Langford, Alexandra Shipp, Logan Miller, Keiynan Lonsdale

 

Plot: Simon Spier keeps a huge secret from his family, his friends, and all of his classmates: he’s gay. When that secret is threatened, Simon must face everyone and come to terms with his identity.


Tagline – Everyone deserves a great love story.

Runtime: 1 Hour 50 Minutes

 

There may be spoilers the rest of the review

 

Verdict: Must Watch Film of the Year

 

Story: Love, Simon starts as we meet Simon (Robinson) a normal high school kid, he isn’t the most popular, but has a close knit of friends in Leah (Langford), Abby (Shipp) and Nick (Lendeborg Jr), he acts like most high schoolers, only he has a secret, one he can’t tell anyone.

When he learns about another schoolmate has come out anonymously, he sees a friend he can talk to about his homosexuality, without the school learning his secret. As Simon tries to figure out who the mysterious Blue is even after getting blackmailed by a fellow student.

 

Thoughts on Love, Simon

 

Characters – Simon is the average high school student, he is holding in his own secret, he is gay, he doesn’t know how to come out because if the ridicule that could come his way. He connects with a fellow closest student and spends the year trying to figure out who the student is, until his secret becomes known he must try to keep it from coming out. Emily and Jack are the parents of Simon that have their own way to react to events with one being scientific and the other always trying to turn things into a joke. Leah, Abby and Nick are the three best friends that slowly become victims of the secret however hard Simon tries to keep things undercover, they would always support him.

PerformancesNick Robinson is fantastic in this role, this is a true breakout performance for the young actor, as we truly understand his characters mindset throughout. The rest of the cast know exactly how to bounce off Nick’s performance to make his and theirs better.

StoryThe story follows the graduation years for Simon as he battles to understand how to come out as gay to his friends, family and the school. Seeing how difficult this moment is for the young man is such an interesting story, watching how he wants to figure out who his romantic anonymous interest is from little moments of their conversations is fascinating to see unfold. The story shows us just how difficult this moment could be for anyone going through the same situation and wanting to see people act like nothing changed.

Comedy/RomanceThe comedy blends perfectly with drama of high school life and the romance just makes you feel like you want to see the happy ending.

SettingsThe gives us the high school environment for the settings which shows us how the students act towards each part of the film.


Scene of the Movie –
Ferris wheel.

That Moment That Annoyed Me How do these high school kids have time for coffee before school?

Final ThoughtsThis is one of the most important movies of the year, because it shows that whichever sexuality you choose to be, be it, don’t be worried what people will think. The story is told in such a charming way that will only leave you with a smile on your face.

 

Overall: Beautiful and important film.

Rating

 

 

Wakefield (2017)

Director: Robin Swicord

Writer: Robin Swicord (Screenplay)

Starring: Bryan Cranston, Ian Anthony Dale, Jennifer Garner, Beverly D’Angelo, Jason O’Mara, Pippa Bennett-Warner

 

Plot: A man’s nervous breakdown causes him to leave his wife and live in his attic for several months.

 

There may be spoilers the rest of the review

 

Verdict: Hidden Gem of the Year?

 

Story: Wakefield starts as Howard Wakefield’s (Cranston) normal day is turned upside down through a serious of events surrounding a power outage, returning home he finds his garage crawling with racoons and in the attic of the garage he gets a perfect view of the house.

Deciding to watch how his wife Diana (Garner) reacts to his disappearance, Howard decides to hide in the attic to watch how life is going without him, this gives us the perfect people watching experience. We are left to see how long Howard keeps this up and he starts to enjoy being away from the responsibilities of life.

 

Thoughts on Wakefield

 

Characters – Howard Wakefield is a successful businessman, husband and father but one day he decides to step away from his life and hide in his garage attic, watching his family’s life continue without him. The whole film is told through his eyes, the reasons behind what he did, the looking back at the stories of his life and how he sees moments in his life with him missing. Ben Jacobs is a man that Howard believes is going to start hitting on his wife, Diana is the wife Howard has left to watch over, her strength comes through as she must cope without Howard as she must raise the two children.

PerformanceBryan Cranston is fantastic in this role as we get to see him carry this movie single handled making us want to see every single scene to see what he does or says next. Ian Anthony Dale isn’t as involved as you believe he would be and Jennifer Garner is good in her role which mostly is being watched doing everyday routines.

StoryThe story follows the idea of a businessman, husband and father just walks away from his life to see what wold happen without him. The whole story is told through his eyes as he explains the motives and how he looks at different moments of his life that made him think about changing. This is a film that keeps your attention from start to finish as you just want to know what he will do next.

SettingsA large part of this movie is set within the attic and here we get to see the world that Howard creates for himself, we also get to see the state of things outside this world as he becomes a hobo.

Scene of the Movie – The touching moments with the down syndrome neighbours.

I always get annoyed by one thing in a movie, this is that moment How did nobody at least look for Howard in anyway? I mean we get a report on the news but we never see anyone actually looking around the house.

Final ThoughtsThis must go down as one of the gems of the years, watching Bryan Cranston people watch is a must watch and you just want to know where things will go.

 

Overall: Gem of the year.

Rating