This movie has a hard audience to please, because it is not really for kids. The story is about a married couple who cannot physically have children. So, when they come back home to their small town, they decide to create a list of what their son would have been; then, they place that list into a wooden box and bury it. A few hours later, magic is worked on by mother Earth, and Timothy Green (a boy from the garden) comes into the lives of many, many people.
There are many gripes about this film: (1) Being that this film was meant for adults, but targeted to children. There are also, some good qualities about this film: (2) casting choices.
The casting was done well. CJ Adams and Joel Edgerton seem to be related by facial expressions and how they look. Everyone does their part well, and with a large cast, there cannot be a weak link. However, there is one weak link and that comes from the side of Jennifer Garner. I can only say one thing about the lady and that is; she doesn't have a uniqueness to her. Any actress could play in her shoes, and I wouldn't care any more or any less.
A gripe with the film was that is was sooooooo - oooooooooo predictable. This movie wasn't really made to have trailers, because the surprise comes at the beginning of the film; and the surprise is the catalyst for the rest of the movie. There were some moments of surprise, but they wouldn't catch you off guard so much.
But, let us get to the main gripe, and the largest I had about this film: It was made for adults. And it was a very specific film for adults. It is about a married couple who cannot have children and who decide to give up. Then, a traveling angel in the form of Timothy Green is born from the garden and teaches the two to never give up. It seems to relate to everyone, but it doesn't. Kids will love the movie for its kiddie feel at certain moments, but this film does not hold onto those moments for long. The film follows the path and story of the parents. I felt that it was marketed for the wrong audience, because Walt Disney Co. knew that there was no money in the married couple field at the moment. However, due to some "kiddie" moments in the film, and the marketing, kids will come into this film and watch it and think of it as a kids film. Adults will think otherwise.
This, feel-good film hits many feel-good notes and transforms a few of the characters, not all. There is a large cast and this film would have had a lot of work to do to make the audience care for every one of them.
By far, the best character in the film is Common as a soccer coach. He plays the role so great, you'd think he was a coach in reality.
Overall, it is a great date night movie because the girls will love it and the guys will connect with Joel Edgerton's character, but for a kids film, the movie fails at that.