Gifted is directed by Marc Webb and is about Frank Adler (Chris Evans) raising a child prodigy (McKenna Grace). Mary has mathematical abilities well beyond her age, which quickly come to the attention of those around here. However Frank wishes to raise Mary in an ordinary social environment so that she can experience the life of a normal kid. However such plans become jeopardize after the intervention of Mary’s grandmother, played by Lindsay Duncan.
The bottom line of Gifted is that it is a warm and heartfelt story that resonates themes such as love and family. There is nothing groundbreaking or memorable on display here, but there is something to be taken away after watching this movie. Chris Evans and McKenna Grace both give serviceable performances. Their chemistry together elevates the narrative and is the single thread that kept me paying attention as to what was happening on screen. There were a few laughs here and here and sometime emotional moments near the end of the runtime, but I wasn’t blown away by anything I saw. Everything was pretty by the numbers. In fact, this film draws quite a few parallels to another movie of this genre; X+Y.
One of the problems with Gifted is its casting. While Chris Evans and Grace McKenna gave serviceable performances, there are better actors and actresses out there that could’ve filled these roles. It was quite hard for me to believe that Chris Evans was playing a conflicted, unemployed and single man. Also Lindsay Duncan is way too young to play the role she played in the film. Another major problem with Gifted was that there were too many side plots. This film had court case drama, a romantic relationship as well as the fact that one of the characters in the movie was on the verge of solving one of the most complicated mathematical equations of all time. There was just too much going on. Also the talented Octavia Spencer makes a brief appearance in the film for no good reason. Seriously, her character did not need to be there.
In conclusion, Gifted is a by the numbers drama about a child prodigy and the people around her trying to provide her with different lifestyles. It is an easy watch with a few emotional strings attached and some serviceable performances. However don’t go into this film expecting fireworks. There are problems with the narrative (too many sideplots) and the casting.