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A Man Called Otto (2023)

A Man Called Otto (2023)





Tom Hanks

Mariana Trevino


Directed by Marc Forster


The movie is based off a book, and it makes all possible attempts to pull on all available heartstrings. The movie’s running theme is that all grumpy old men who hate everyone are suffering from a longing to be included in a family, which we all know is not the case.

Our main character Otto was able to be saved from his longing to be left alone to die, by a very persistent, overly available neighbour (named Marisol) who did not take Otto’s bad manners to heart.

Otto is a widower who lost his wife six months ago and living without her has become a challenge. At first, he made his work his thing, but he has reached the age of retirement and he was given a severance package and told to leave.

Home alone and with nothing to hold on to as a base for his existence Otto wanted to kill himself but was distracted by the noisy family of four who moved opposite his house. The woman of the home Marisol took a liking to the old man who came from his house and helped her husband pack their car because he was struggling. Between them a friendship starts, and we get to know more about Otto and his lonely life. Here is where the movie gets a little to heavy handed on the getting to know Otto part. Even though we get to see Otto make amends with Reuben his best friend for years before they drifted apart, you can see how shallow the movie becomes as everything is all about Otto and his view. Even when Marisol delivered, it was still about Otto and his view. The movie brushed pass the birth like it was just another event, which was not to be focused on because it had nothing to do with Otto.

The movie plays on familiar themes we are used to and there is no surprise when we see that the bad guy in this movie was the co-operation. Not a greedy son or tired partner.

In the end, the movie may rob some in the wrong way because the theme oversimplifies why some old people are just jerks. It is easy to see how this can be a bad advice to anyone who wants to try this. I think the movie should carry a warning saying not every grumpy old man or woman is actually nice, deep down. In most cases many of them are lacking family around them because they are jerks.

It is a good movie to see though, and Tom Hanks always comes packing with memorable acting to deliver.


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