Metascore
47

Mixed or average reviews - based on 29 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 7 out of 29
  2. Negative: 3 out of 29

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Critic Reviews

  1. Reviewed by: Helen O'Hara
    Apr 1, 2013
    60
    The midway point between "A.I." and "Diary Of A Wimpy Kid." It has quirky charm and a tender heart, but the treacly sentiment may become wearisome.
  2. Reviewed by: Bill Goodykoontz
    Aug 15, 2012
    60
    Odd indeed. In a good way, mostly.
  3. Reviewed by: John DeFore
    Aug 14, 2012
    60
    A fairy tale about parenting that stays kid-friendly without completely glossing over the darker themes of its premise.
  4. Reviewed by: Pete Hammond
    Aug 14, 2012
    60
    It's a magical film in the vein of E.T. where an otherworldly event changes a family forever.
  5. Reviewed by: Keith Phipps
    Aug 14, 2012
    58
    The Odd Life Of Timothy Green attempts to stage a modern fairy tale in Middle America. But in spite of an abundance of earnestness, the pixie dust needed to create magic remains out of the film's reach.
  6. Reviewed by: Liam Lacey
    Aug 16, 2012
    50
    As anodyne as it is, Timothy Green may represent the last gasp of a genre, the live-action family fable, that has been an entertainment staple for a couple of generations of moviegoers.
  7. Reviewed by: Marjorie Baumgarten
    Aug 15, 2012
    50
    Hedges has demonstrated his sensitivity to internecine family conflicts and the tenor of small-time life. However, The Odd Life of Timothy Green seems always to be straining for whimsy and wonder.
  8. Reviewed by: Michael O'Sullivan
    Aug 15, 2012
    50
    In the end, what mars "Timothy Green" most is its middle-of-the-road approach. Its appealingly quirky, fairy-tale-like center is so coated with sugar, it cloys. It's not that "Timothy Green" is odd, but that it isn't odd enough.
  9. Reviewed by: Kyle Smith
    Aug 15, 2012
    50
    If the movie's story is anything but daring, it does takes guts to make a movie so shamelessly emotional as this one. Not that guts are the same as taste.
  10. Reviewed by: Ty Burr
    Aug 15, 2012
    50
    It's the sort of thing you'll either find enchanting or an excellent reason to reach for the Scotch.
  11. Reviewed by: Matt Maytum
    Mar 25, 2013
    40
    An outdated oddity.
  12. Reviewed by: Bilge Ebiri
    Aug 16, 2012
    40
    For all its feints at sensitivity, this isn't a movie, it's a machine, and it's hard not to be impressed - perhaps even awed - by the sheer ruthlessness with which it jerks the tears from your eyes. If anything, a real movie might just have gotten in the way.
  13. Reviewed by: Elizabeth Weitzman
    Aug 15, 2012
    40
    Although little Timothy does arrive in unusual circumstances, his story will feel familiar to anyone who's encountered Hollywood's particular brand of calculated sentimentality.
  14. Reviewed by: A.O. Scott
    Aug 15, 2012
    40
    The ghastliness of this damp and squishy comedy is the byproduct of a confused and earnest sentimentality, a willful devotion to wide-eyed wonder that confuses simplicity with simple-mindedness.
  15. Reviewed by: Mike Scott
    Aug 15, 2012
    40
    This is a movie that confuses teary with sweet. Mopey with sad. Discomfort with humor. And, worst of all, it confuses weird with odd.
  16. Reviewed by: Kenneth Turan
    Aug 15, 2012
    40
    Not only is the story dreamed up by producer Ahmet Zappa even odder than the title indicates, its execution gets increasingly irritating as the film goes on.
  17. Reviewed by: Ernest Hardy
    Aug 14, 2012
    40
    What follows is a film as odd as its title character. Timothy flings grown-up ideas at the viewer but rips the teeth from them rather than risk our discomfort.
  18. Reviewed by: Alison Willmore
    Aug 14, 2012
    40
    Timothy is apparently nothing more than practice for when a real child comes along - at which point the movie's cloying cotton-candy flavor develops a seriously astringent aftertaste.
  19. Reviewed by: Mary Pols
    Aug 14, 2012
    40
    Whatever director Peter Hedges' intent, the movie itself, a sentimental blend of magical realism and saccharine emotions, is oddly false. It made me want to go on a sugar cleanse.
User Score
6.2

Generally favorable reviews- based on 59 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 10 out of 18
  2. Negative: 4 out of 18
  1. Apr 26, 2013
    4
    Jennifer Garner's movie career has been fairly sketchy. She has had her successes (Juno) but has accompanied them with a plethora of failuresJennifer Garner's movie career has been fairly sketchy. She has had her successes (Juno) but has accompanied them with a plethora of failures (Elektra, Ghosts of Girlfriends Past). She has done well with her TV career and I view Alias as one of my all time favorite shows but she hasn't been as prolific as some would have imagined. The Odd Life of Timothy Green unfortunately carries on the trend of disappointment but not because of Garner. When wannabe parents Jim (Joel Edgerton) and Cindy Green (Jennifer Garner) discover they cannot have children they decide to write their own fantasy child's characteristics and aspirations and wish for them (and to some extent, him) The next day, as if out of nowhere Timothy crawls from the ground outside their house with leaves growing out of his ankles. Jim and Cindy must take care of him while keeping his unique secret from the rest of town. Garner tries to tap into her character from Juno with another mother desperate for a child and she is just as good in this as she was in Juno giving the film a wealth of emotion right from the get go. The supernatural elements of this story work as they are never as important as the relationships between the characters. In fact the supernatural parts allow for some of the movies strongest moments, especially the end. The story by Ahmet Zappa (Son of Frank) is clever and also a bit childish. The film should bask in its childish tendencies but isn't allowed to because the film is filled with side stories that add context to the ending but aren't all that enjoyable. In fact the film should have spent a little more time having fun with its characters instead of providing meaning, some things are better left to the imagination. The film tries to tell too many stories. The film looks at small town life in America but it does so by introducing many side characters, none of which provide much fun to this family film except for Dianne Wiest's Bernice, a sullen museum owner, town grouch and wife of the local factory owner. The look at the disillusion of a small town in modern America thanks to the economic downturn is a courageous move for Disney but it never really rings true when it is juxtaposed with the supernatural plot and the overall tone of the film. In fact the film removes all tension from the story line at the beginning of the film thanks to an opening that reveals a little too much. Ultimately its a film that casts such a wide net in terms of story that it has to handle many topics and characters throughout the film so that nothing is looked at closely enough and most of the important themes like the relationship between fathers and sons are never fully fleshed out or realized making for a not unpleasant but empty experience. Full Review »
  2. Apr 8, 2013
    2
    These people should never be allowed to be parents. they obviously don't know how to. The movie doesn't make any sense. Everyone in this movieThese people should never be allowed to be parents. they obviously don't know how to. The movie doesn't make any sense. Everyone in this movie were dicks. its just bad. Full Review »
  3. Aug 22, 2012
    10
    I LOVED this movie! It was a great family movie! It is funny and at the end it made me cry!! I totally recommand this movie, it is amazing!I LOVED this movie! It was a great family movie! It is funny and at the end it made me cry!! I totally recommand this movie, it is amazing! The actors did a fantastic job!! :] xox Full Review »