Saving Mr. Hanks


Personally, I love it when a title commands the buried theme of a movie– it happens so rarely these days when fewer and fewer screenwriters or movie marketers could care less about it when positioning for “Marquee” value. The movie “Witness” comes to mind, as does “Chinatown” or “Quiz Show” where it stops being a movie about a quiz show and becomes a personal litmus test for the audience to question their own moral compass and ┬ásocietal judgements. I understand Brody’s point, but the problem is not that that the title reveals the “essence” of the film, the problem is it gives it away and then pile drives it into your noggin’ with little irony or narrative epiphany. No, the problem with this unfortunate piece of fluffery is that it is about one thing, and one thing only, and that is, it is a stunningly trite hagiography of not P.L. Travers, but Uncle Walt himself. It is so saccharine, in fact, it is even difficult for Mr. Hanks with all of his yankee doodle blandness to overcome. I can’t wait for the sequel though I understand the working title will be “Dr. Disney Child Psychologist Calling” via @NewYorker