Collateral Beauty is directed by David Frankel and stars Will Smith, Edward Norton, Michael Peña, Helen Mirren, Kate Winslet, Naomie Harris, Keira Knightley, and Jacob Latimore. With a powerful cast, Collateral Beauty has burdened itself with high expectations, since most of its cast members are Award-winning and Academy Award-nominated actors. Will it make the cut? Or are the expectations too high, leaving only collateral damage. Let’s see.
From Fresh Prince to rapper Will Smith, and now an A-list actor? That’s not an easy feat.
A Life Barely Lived
Howard Inlet is a successful advertising executive in New York who used to love life and lived it with a passion, until a tragic event struck him down. His colleagues and close friends try to reconnect with him to try and bring out the old Howard, but all their efforts fail. Meanwhile, Howard decides to undergo his own “therapy” by writing to the universe; particularly time, death, and love. Writing to the universe might seem crazy, but what if it answers back? That’s when things start to unfold and everything starts to make sense.
I’m Schmaltzy And I Know It
Let’s get down and dirty first before we head over to the bright side. Collateral Beauty’s trailer shows us a film that will drown you in sentimental/existential emotions (kinda’ like a Coldplay song that some love to hate?), but after watching the movie, we got a little confused at the whole message of the trailer (Don’t worry. No spoilers). Let’s just say that the trailer is a different animal than the movie itself, and while it’s not necessarily a bad thing, it does cause confusion when it came to what we were expecting.
We do wish that most of the supporting cast members’ talents were utilized properly.
As always, Will Smith delivers with a heart-breaking performance. In this film, expect to see the Will Smith in The Pursuit of Happyness, a little Ali, and a mix of I am Legend. Smith delivers the everyday-american-man-persona with sincerity. Although we were satisfied with Mr. Smith’s efforts, we were a little disappointed at the shallowness of the characters of his co-stars. Helen Mirren, Kate Winslet, Keira Knightley, and Edward Norton are all Hollywood heavyweights, but their screen time and their characters were underdeveloped. The only exception would be Naomie Harris, whose character is a personal favorite of ours. It’s a curse to have such talented cast members; everyone expects perfection.
Watch out for Naomi Harris’s character! She plays the soft-hearted shrink.
Collateral Beauty has its faults, but it’s not really the actors who are diminished here. Maybe it’s just a marketing mistake of sorts, but don’t get us wrong, we definitely saw the beauty in this movie. Will Smith proved to be this movie’s saving grace and we’ll take that any day. 3/5 movie stars is our grade.
Collateral Beauty is distributed by Warner Bros. Pictures and is already out in local cinemas! Cry tears of joy and not tears from frustration in skipping the long lines! Book your tickets now with GMovies!
All images courtesy of WARNER BROS. PICTURES