Come to Daddy (2019)

Come to Daddy
Director: Ant Timpson
Writer: Toby Harvard
Cast: Elijah Wood, Stephen McHattie, Garfield Wilson, Madeleine Sami, Martin Donovan, Michael Smiley, Simon Chin, Ona Grauer
Part of: /slash Filmfestival
Seen on: 22.9.2019

Norval (Elijah Wood) doesn’t have a great life. He lives with his mother, struggles with alcoholism and his life just doesn’t seem to go anywhere. That’s when a letter from his father reaches him – the father he hasn’t seen since he was a kid. He asks Norval to come for a visit, so he packs his bag and sets off, hoping to reconnect. But when he sees Gordon (Stephen McHattie), it quickly becomes obvious that the bonding that Norval was hoping for probably isn’t going to happen. And then things get worse.

Come to Daddy starts off okay and then gets increasingly more boring and I grew ever more disinterested in any of what was happening, especially since it is a film that is very invested in toxic masculinity. No, thank you.

The film poster showing the drawing of a glass of whiskey with two ice cubes. the top of the ice cubes are the cliffs in a lake with a house overlooking it.

As I said, in the beginning, I thought the film was okay. The clash of those two men who very obviously represent two different kinds of masculinity was intriguing at first, even if it was far from the most thrilling content. But with every passing minute the film just grew more boring and more exhausting.

I started to nod off for short moments again and again, although I apparently always woke up again in time to see the plot twists. There are quite a few of those and I was still able to follow the film without problem. And everytime I woke up, I was disinterested anew.

Norval (Elijah Wood) looking beat up.

The film just didn’t have my sense of humor or had a sense of humor that I couldn’t go along with. And really, that the film basically ends with the “soft man” becoming hard enough to fight his way out of a dire situation, just was the last nail in the coffin of the film for me. Norval with his insecurities and vanities had to “man up”, his masculinity was so clearly demarcated as inferior, barely masculinity at all.

As much as I appreciate Wood as an actor, there is no level on which this film worked for me. It was simply frustrating until I didn’t care anymore.

Gordon (Stephen McHattie) sitting on the porch, looking tired.

Summarizing: I just didn’t give a fuck about any of this.

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