Now this film was surprising, to be fair I wasn’t expecting much, however I’m not sure my lack of expectation had any impact on feelings about the film. I did see the trailer for this a while back and didn’t really think anything of it, thankfully the film is much better than the trailer.
This film, for me, is the breakout performance from Justin Timberlake. Now for years I have always thought that he only appeared in films due to his fame and that he didn’t really have any talent. He would always play the cocky, self centred, handsome guy. There was no other level to his performances, to me anyway they were always the same. I have never taken him seriously whatsoever, that is until now. “Palmer” is not just a good performance from Timberlake, it is a fantastic performance that I feel even deserves award consideration. I know that is a giant leap from being just that famous singer that appears in films to Oscar worthy performances, however I feel that its warranted. He is absolutely terrific in the lead role of Palmer, it is such an understated performance for the majority. I don’t see him “transforming” or going deep in “method” acting, its just an honest and phenomenal performance from start to finish. If this is the level that he can act too, why has he waited so long to show everyone. From not liking the guy that much I cant wait to see his next project.
Now the story is not as straight forward as you might think, there are a ton of story threads in this film. Thankfully all of them get there screen time. The main focus is Palmer getting out of prison and restarting his life. Add the introduction of an “abandoned” little boy who lives next door, into Palmer and his grandmothers lives. Obviously the most serious topic of the film deals with people being able to accept that Sam, the little boy, is gay. It is a very difficult topic to get right and sensitive one at that, personally I felt the film handled it really well. However there is a section of our society that will hate this film regardless if it handled it well or not……its sad but true. Plus enter Sam’s drugged up mother and dodgy boyfriend, Palmer’s love interest, social services. There is a lot going on in this film however all of it works in harmony, all these threads have satisfying conclusions, which is rare to see.
I’d have to also mention the great writing and directing of this film, without them both it wouldn’t be as affective, especially emotionally. In the wrong hands this film could be to confusing or would prioritised some elements of the film more than others.
Overall its 70% out 100 its a surprisingly good film and one absolutely incredible performance from Justin Timberlake who I thought was stellar. Now I never thought I’d ever say that hahaha. To be honest its great acting overall. Complex, relevant, interesting, heart warming story with some great writing. This film delivers what its selling and then some.
Review by Lewis_Heather787