Film review: The Odd Life of Timothy Green (U)

 

The catalyst to the plot of this family fantasy is, appropriately, a freak rainstorm: it's one hell of a wet movie.

A small-town couple (Jennifer Garner, Joel Edgerton), unable to conceive, have sketched out their perfect kid on scraps of paper which they bury in a box in the garden. (Don't ask why.)

That night, following the storm, a 10-year-old called Timothy (C J Adams) emerges from the undergrowth: he's cute, innocent, friendly, and has leaves growing on his legs. How the couple are enlightened by the otherworldly moppet is the burden of this horrifically twee picture, tricked out with pious lessons about competitive parents, bullying parents, distant parents.

The kid himself is quite sweet, but his moral purpose in the adult world is so crassly signposted you want to be sick. The director Peter Hedges once made a sprightly indie debut called Pieces of April; now he's making pieces of junk.

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