From the director of the sentimental piece ‘The Bucket List’, Rob Reiner, comes ‘Magic of Belle Isle’. There has been many mixed reviews about this film, many arguing over the choice of the protagonists characteristics, which the critics find hard to believe during plot.
Monte Wildhorn (Freeman) is an alcoholic who has lost his wife a time ago, and has decided to take care of a dog for the summer in the most beautiful of rural towns in the US. Monte was a writer of Western novels in his past, novels which many people to his old age still find fantastic stories. As well as his neighbour Charlotte O’Neil (Madsen) we too hope that he finds his writing hand once again.
As previously stated, many reviewers found themselves incapable of accepting Monte as the films protagonist for his arrogance and attitude. This I can understand, but can I also bring up Clint Eastwood’s character in ‘Gran Torino’, a character who was disgusting and miserable, but over the course of the plot he opens his mind and starts to live his life and connect with people, similarly to Monte.
I found the film delightful, as a huge fan of stories and imagination, Monte’s expression of this is subtle and beautiful to Finnegan (Fuhrmann) as she tries to find out just where stories come from.
It’s the presence of the O’Neils that slow takes a toll on Monte as he starts to see the beauty in life once again. As he gets closer to the O’Neil family, he also get’s closer to Charlotte as they share a kiss together under the moonlight (despite their 21 year old difference).
The Magic of Belle Isle is a very warm loving film that follows one mans determination to change in the face of love.