Community is very important. Checking up on your neighbour is nice. Grief is a process that we all navigate differently. Love is a very powerful feeling if not the most powerful. Taking time for yourself and spending quality time with the most important people in your life should take priority. These are just some thoughts after today’s trip to the cinema. Allow me to tell you more about it. 🎬
Otto is not your typical cute old man down the street. He is grumpy, angry, and almost rude. Otto has had a very hard life, and you get to know it little by little with each alternating chapter back to his past. The Swedish book A Man Called Ove, who inspired this movie, was released in 2012 and written by Fredrik Backman. It tells the story of Otto, the grumpiest man you will ever meet, through funny remarks and with a full heart. I did shed a few tears towards the end of the book, therefore I can say it is packed with emotion.
The American movie A Man Called Otto, is an adaption not just of the aforementioned book, but also an adaptation of the Swedish film released back in 2015 which was nominated for two Oscars at the 89 Academy Awards, including the Best Foreign Language Film category. Look, I gotta say it how it is. I love Tom Hanks. He is a brilliant actor and there is no movie of his that I didn’t like. I was really curious to read the book and see what is really behind the “grumpiness” of the main character in order to get ready to watch this adaptation on the big screen, in the cinema.
The movie was first released at the end of December last year before having its wide release in January of 2023 and yes, I liked it a lot. I got teary-eyed a few good times in the cinema and the people that were on the seats next to us felt like exchanging a few remarks about how good the movie was, too. It is truly a heart-warming tale of a 60 year old man life that he thinks has run its course.
You only need one ray of light to chase all the shadows away.
Alone in his forever home, Otto is a very sad guy underneath his mean and sarcastic comments, but most importantly he has a very big heart. Although covering a heavy subject like grief and depression, the book and the movie have a funny twist and they both deliver a satisfying end.
I want to point out the biggest differences I’ve noticed when it comes to comparing the movie to the book:
• Otto retires from his work in the movie, but in the book he is fired;
• he ends up in the hospital because he gets attacked one night in the neighbourhood, whilst in the movie his heart gives out;
• one of the most beautiful scenes/arcs in the book is about the relationship that forms between Otto and one of the neighbour’s children. He ends up buying her an iPad for her birthday and this is the opening scene of the book that is mirrored in the end.
I loved this story and I will recommend it over and over. A Man Called Otto is like a warm hug from your grandpa. So special.