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  • Writer's pictureGareth Bradwick

A Man Called Otto ★★★

Marc Forster

Starring Tom Hanks, Mariana Treviño, Manuel Garcia-Rulfo, Cameron Britton

The latest phase of movies starring Tom Hanks has been a turbulent one. In between A Beautiful Day in the Neighbourhood we’ve had the bizarre turn in Elvis and the complete miss of Pinocchio. You can’t deny the productivity, however it’s an unsteady feeling to watch the icon feature in forgettable cinema when he’s usually a steady hand.

Going into Otto then, a film about a grumpy old man named Otto (Hanks), who faces his retirement and his parking permits with zero tolerance, it is hard to imagine the loveable Hanks playing an aging pedant.

It is with relief then that this movie is (generally) a success! Hanks instantly puts you at ease as he argues the price of a length of rope in one scene, while parking someone’s car for them (because they’re "doing it wrong") in another. He is pleasingly insufferable from the off, and it’s a delight to behold.

Laced between the humour is sadness as we learn how Otta got to be this way. The flashbacks are scruffy, removing rather than adding to the story. The emotion truly shines when Hanks is with his co-star, Marian Treviño, who is wonderful as Marisol; a particular scene while Marisol is learning to drive steals the show.

This is a solid movie and a good one for Tom Hanks too, even with its faults. One to watch with the family, Otto’s cold heart will certainly warm yours.

A Man Called Otto available in cinemas now

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