CliqueClack Flicks

The Odd Life of Timothy Green fails to impress

The Odd Life of Timothy Green - Theater Review
Release Date: 08/15/2012 - MPAA Rating: PG
Clacker Rating: 2 Clacks

Disney's 'The Odd Life of Timothy Green' tries hard to pull on your heart-strings, but forgets to make a good movie while doing so.

A sappy Disney film like The Odd Life of Timothy Green needs to be a great palate cleanser. For that to be the case, though, the story needs to be “feel-good” more than the opposite … and needs to have solid performances. Timothy Green struggled with both of those goals.

The film stars Jennifer Garner and Joel Edgerton as Cindy and Jim Green, a young married couple struggling to get pregnant. When they reach the end of their rope, a bottle of wine, a boxful of wishes about their perfect child and a great deal of Disney magic brings Timothy (CJ Adams) into their life. Little Timothy is the embodiment of all of Jim and Cindy’s dreams, with only one small oddity. Well, several small oddities if you count the fact that he was grown in a garden and “hatched” at about 11 years old … and he has leaves growing from his legs. It becomes clear to the audience – if not so quickly to Jim and Cindy – that Timothy came to the couple to help them learn about becoming parents.

The film has some stand out moments, generally associated with the performances of the secondary cast. Adams in particular shines as Timothy, who manages to pull off the archetype of the world-wise kid without coming across as a know-it-all. Dianne Wiest does well with the few scenes she’s in. Others like Common, M. Emmet Walsh and David Morse all contributed small, but solid performances – and that is leaving more than half the cast without mention.

Sadly, the performances from the supporting cast could not save what was a very average movie from itself. The pacing was horrible; there were long places where the film seemingly ground to a complete stop. Garner tries to find her place in this genre of storytelling, but just comes across as goofy.

If a good movie could come solely from sentiment, this review would be quite different. Walking into a film like this, you’d have to know that a sad moment was inevitable – what story with a magic kid ever sees that child grow to maturity? But Timothy Green hits audiences with several; one more makes sense, but after a while it just seems like those moments were just manipulative.

It’s a shame, because the main plot should have been more than enough story for this movie. Instead, the room was made to fit in all of the secondary characters instead of focusing on the core story. Considering how weak the writing – and sadly the performances – was for those two, maybe Timothy Green was a better flick for that decision. Either direction, however, it would not have been a good flick.


Photo Credit: Phil Bray/Disney Enterprises, Inc

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