Collateral Beauty (2016)
Howard (Will Smith) is the head of a major company and has a successful life, however, when tragedy strikes and he loses his 6 year old girl to illness, he spirals into depression. Neglecting is job, friends and anything important in his life, Howard spends his time alone writing therapeutic letters to Love, Time and Death. After some time has passed, Howard’s co-workers (Edward Norton, Kate Winslet, Michael Pena) are worried about their future as Howard refuses to do any work for the company, so they decide the best thing to do is hire actors to be Love (Keira Knightly), Time (Jacob Latimore) and Death (Helen Mirren) to snap Howard back to reality.
Not only is this movie morally wrong, but the overall tone is missing. What I mean by this is that as an audience we don’t really feel the sadness Howard feels because he isn’t the main focus. The main focus is on the co-workers who, although care about Howard, want the company not to fail. Because of this, as an audience, we see the movie though the eyes of someone who feels sorry for Howard, but desperately wants him to get better. The approach we should be seeing the movie from is that of Howard himself and experiencing his pain with him, and we do to a point, but that is later on in the film. Did I mention this movie is only 97 minutes so there isn’t much development going on, especially with all the characters this movie has.
For those that don’t care about those factors I mentioned will like this movie because of 1 factor – it will make you cry. There is a light at the end of the tunnel for Howard so don’t worry that this movie will get more sad, but this movie will appeal to the people who love tear-jerkers and it gets quite emotional. As I said before, I wish the emotions we feel were more on track with that of Howard instead of just feeling sorry for the guy. We never get to see his relationship with his daughter or even see her until the end and I think that would have allowed the audience grow more with Howard.
At the end of the day, this movie isn’t as bad as Rotten Tomatoes says, but it has major flaws. If a couple of things had been changed, this movie could have worked, but when you keep the main character a stranger to the audience and have his co-workers trick him with actors, the movie loses credibility. Unless you want to cry or see Will Smith, I would not recommend this movie. Co-starring Naomie Harris and Ann Dowd.
5/10 Stars – It might have an emotional climax, but this movie is told from the wrong perspective and morally wrong with what it tries to do.