It is magical films like The Odd Life Of Timothy Green that remind us why we go to the movies. "It's okay to be different, even weird," is what a new-found friend like Timothy Green proclaims in the film - and that is exactly what makes it a soulful and life-changing experience that deserves to be shared by everyone.
Who is Timothy Green? Let's not give too much away and just say that he is truly a miracle of nature, brought to life with an intense and illuminating passion by CJ Adams, who is sensational as the 10-year-old who changes the world and everyone around him. The story focuses on a young couple, Cindy and Jim Green, who can't wait to start a family but can only dream about what their child would be like, featuring top-notch perormances by Jennifer Garner and Joel Edgerton. A hero of all heroes, little Timothy Green is an advocate of serene humanity and a peaceful and harmonious existence.
A much-needed wake-up call
The film is a much-needed wake-up call that serves as an important reminder that so much is possible, if only we allow our dreams to become real. "There is only so much time left," and as Timothy clearly states, we should not waste a moment.
The Odd Life of Timothy Green is an emotional and tearful journey. Fortunately, director Peter Hedges' sensibility grounds the story in a reality that is sustained by stellar performances and, in particular, a sensational music score by Geoff Zanelli. Hedges also delivers a spectacular journey that is vibrant and pulsates with energy.
It is ultimately a film about people, and as a Barbra Streisand's Funny Girl stated: "People who need people" - that is, people who love others and are not emotionally cut off from them - are the "luckiest people in the world". So, if you have a pulse, you cannot afford to miss this film.
What's really great about The Odd Life Of Timothy Green is that the character represents the child within us all, and also reveals the grown-up in every child. An extraordinary and exceptional experience, the film is most definitely one of the top films of the year. You have to experience the magical realm of The Odd Life Of Timothy Green. We can all do with a touch of magic in our lives and Timothy Green will continue to grow in your imagination, long after the credits have faded.
Behind the scenes
Novelist, playwright and filmmaker Peter Hedges' first novel, What's Eating Gilbert Grape, was the basis for the 1993 film, which he also wrote. He was instantly taken with The Odd Life Of Timothy Green, when producers Ahmet Zappa and Scott Sanders brought him Zappa's original story in 2009. "Thematically, it's right where I've always resided artistically, and probably always will," said Hedges. "It's about home and family. As a parent, I definitely feel the tick-tock of time. I have a 15-year-old and a 17-year-old and the golden opportunity to be their dad in a particular way is running out. This film was a chance for me to make a movie that I hoped would not only entertain and inspire people, but also change me in the process of writing and directing it.
"Fortunately, Ahmet Zappa came up with an idea that marries magic with the question of what it means to be a parent," Hedges continued. "'Timothy Green' asks the question: Do children belong to us? I've come to believe that our children don't belong to us, but that we belong to them."
Daniel Dercksen has been a film and theatre journalist in South Africa the past 30 years and as a trainer and educator has presented regular workshops in scriptwriting and creative writing during the past 17 years.
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