Tuesday, 22 July 2014

The Odd Life of Timothy Green & The Food Guide to Love

A refreshing pair of films for Tuesday’s Overlooked Films, Audio & Video at Todd Mason’s blog Sweet Freedom.

The purpose of this loosely written post is to bring these new and possibly overlooked films to your notice.

Both the films were telecast on Indian cable in the past two days. I watched the first half-hour of The Odd Life of Timothy Green (2012) directed by Peter Hedges and the last half-hour of The Food Guide to Love (2013) made by Dominic Harari and Teresa Pelegri. The latter is an Irish film and was showcased at the Dublin Film Festival.

My impression of the family drama and the romantic comedy is that both are clean, colourful, vibrant, and feel-good fairytale movies. The kind that the entire family can watch over the weekend, the kind that probably didn't come to a theatre near you, the kind that you'd have most likely skipped even if it did, and the kind that got mixed reviews. In short, an enjoyable fare where opinions don't really matter. I certainly liked the parts I saw.

I won't review the movies as I haven't seen them completely as I hoped to. Something came up. Instead, I’ll reproduce someone else’s…


The Odd Life of Timothy Green - Walt Disney Pictures: “Jim Green (Joel Edgerton) and Cindy Green (Jennifer Garner), desperately wanting a child but unable to conceive, dream up their “ideal offspring” in a fit of whimsy and bury their wishes in the backyard. To their great surprise, the next morning, a 10-year old boy materialises on their doorstep. Dealing with sudden parenthood thrust upon them, the Green's adventures in adapting to this ‘gift’ take on unforeseen aspects as they slowly begin to realise that Timothy (C.J. Adams) is anything but a ‘normal’ child.”

The film is from Jennifer Garner's perspective. Timothy is a cute kid and has leaves growing from his ankles that a friendly botanist can’t seem to snip off.

The Food Guide to LoveBerlinale (International Film Festival of Berlin): “The Food Guide to Love is a charming romantic comedy set in Dublin about a trendsetting Irish food writer and the feisty Spanish beauty who inspires him to put his heart before his stomach in matters of love. Food journalist Oliver Byrne (Richard Coyle) is in crisis. His multimedia column on fine eating and finding a soul mate has become the hottest read in town. But his own love life is a complete mess, featuring a string of relationships which seem appetising at first but then always lose their flavour. When he meets Spanish art curator Bibiana (Leonor Watling), Oliver feels an unlikely but undeniable attraction despite the fact they have nothing in common. She’s into good causes, he’s into good food. She’s a kamikaze in love, diving head first into impossible relationships, while he is terrified of commitment. Is this romance a recipe for disaster, or has he finally found the ingredients for true love?”

Shot on location in Dublin, the Irish capital with its assorted cafes and restaurants is picturesque. In the film Richard Coyle has a beautiful house.

They sound like nice films. The posters look like book jackets.

14 comments:

  1. Not heard of wither of these, though I bet my daughter's would go for them both. I'll have to see if we can cross paths with them.

    I do like films set in Dublin (my birthplace). We watched Mrs Brown - Da Movie the other week. Maybe not quite as clean and wholesome as these two, but Dublin features strongly.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Col, I didn't know you were born in Dublin. I've been reading about Ireland and Northern Ireland in political thrillers, mainly in the context of the conflict between the Unionists and the Nationalists. I believe Ireland is a beautiful country. Do you visit Dublin often? Meanwhile, you'll like these two films. They're worth an hour-and-a-half of one's time.

      Delete
    2. Not as often as I would like to TBH. Last year was the latest, but it was a fairly brief visit - my uncle's funeral, which was the last connection in Dublin to my dad's side of the family.

      Delete
    3. Col, I'm sorry about your uncle. On another note, in the nineties I used to follow media reports about the truce between the British government and Sinn Fein's Gerry Adams. Even back then Indian newspapers used to give wide coverage to world events.

      Delete
  2. Have not heard of these. Not sure they have enough violence and gore in them for me. :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Charles, there is no violence in either of these films. Our cable channels often telecast films that I didn't even know existed, and sometimes I watch them.

      Delete
  3. I have The Odd Life of Timothy Green in my Netflix queue. It was heavily advertised on US TV when it was first released. I rarely pay to see movies in the theaters these days. Has to be some sort of spectacle for me to brave the crowds or I'll go if I have free time on a weekday afternoon when hardly anyone goes to the movies out here. Don't recall ever hearing of the second movie. I like Richard Coyle -- he's popping up all over the place these days including US TV as a hired assassin in the action series "Crossbones". Must've got a really good agent. He was in a fantastically bizarre movie that I highly recommend, a comedy monster movie set in Ireland called GRABBERS. I'm including it in my Halloween movie post later this year.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. John, I mostly go to the theatres to watch superhero films with my children. The last non-superhero film I saw in a cinema hall was CAPTAIN PHILLIPS which will be premiered on cable television this weekend. In Mumbai, as in the rest of the country, the theatres showing English films are virtually empty three days after a film's release. We usually go to the theatres on weekdays when the halls are empty and the prices are low.

      I didn't know about Richard Coyle till I saw him in THE FOOD GUIDE TO LOVE. He is a decent actor. I'll look out for both CROSSBONES and GRABBERS of which the latter is more likely to make it to my TV screen.

      Delete
  4. I haven't seen either but I love Jennifer Garner so I'm definitely sold - thanks chum!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Sergio, you're welcome! The Jennifer Garner film is quite nice though I don't think I've seen Joel Edgerton in anything else.

      Delete
  5. Going to look these up on Netflix, Prashant. Thanks for the intro. They sound like films I'd like. Lately I seem to be in the mood for either light-hearted fare or period detective drama. But that may change at any moment. Or not. Depending on my mood.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yvette, you're welcome! I think you'll like both these lighthearted films which are ideal for the weekend. Although vastly different in plot and casting, THE FOOD GUIDE TO LOVE sort of reminded me of NO RESERVATIONS.

      Delete
  6. These two films sound interesting. We have such a backlog of films on DVD and TV on DVD, don't know if we will ever get to these. I do like Jennifer Garner.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Tracy, I personally don't think it's worth buying DVDs of these two films in spite of the interesting concepts. It's alright to watch them on your cable. English film channels in India telecast a lot of films that might not have made any mark or impact in the US, the also-rans so to speak, and these include TV movies. I suspect the rights to such films are cheaper as well.

      Delete