The Odd Life of Timothy Green (2012)
Starring Jennifer Garner, Joel Edgarton, CJ Adams, Rosemarie DeWitt, David Morse, Dianne Wiest, Ron Livingston, and Common
Directed by Peter Hedges
When married couple Cindy and Jim Green (Jennifer Garner and Joel Edgarton) are told that they have exhausted all medical methods to conceive, they find themselves deeply saddened by the news. To try and get themselves out of their funk, they decide to allow themselves one final evening where they imagine what their child would've been like, place these "memories" in a box, and bury them in their garden. Magically, in the middle of the night, a freak thunderstorm causes a lightning strike in their yard and as the couple wakes up, they discover that a ten year-old boy is in their home. After much doubt, Cindy and Jim realize that this boy (whom they name Timothy) is actually a culmination of all their dreams of who their child would have been. Despite the fact that Timothy (CJ Adams) has leaves growing out of his ankles, he's seemingly normal and helps the Greens become the family they've long desired to be.
Of course, since Timothy appeared magically, those leaves on his ankles must mean something -- and they certainly do. As he helps people throughout the town of Stanleyville, his leaves begin to fall off. When all his leaves are gone...well, let's just say the Greens will find themselves in a sad state once again.
Unfortunately, nothing works in this movie at all. The performances from Garner, Edgarton, and Adams never find the right balance with each other and with the film overall. While I didn't find myself wishing ill will on the couple, I never really found myself rooting for them either. The townsfolk are all caricatures without a single unique vision for a character. There's an awful subplot involving a girl with whom Timothy falls in love that I found embarrassingly bland and completely superfluous to the point of annoying.
I realize as I'm typing this that I'm not quite accurately describing my complete dislike for the film. The Odd Life of Timothy Green is a movie that attempts to be sugary sweet and perhaps even strives to be reminiscent of a Jimmy Stewart Americana movie of the 1940s, but it really just fails miserably. There's simply nothing to recommend about this movie. Nothing at all.
The RyMickey Rating: D-