Fatherhood – Movie Reviews by Ry!

Fatherhood – Odes of a Single Parent

Reflection of reality is something that happens in storytelling.  No matter the medium, creating stories of ‘everyday’ routines provide a window of reflection and perspective.  From the comedic to dramatic, realistic situations can be an infallible journey worth watching.  In this review, I look at a Netflix original that shows the meaning of single parenting.  Through this story, it creates a motif that is whimsical in its clichés of being a father.  Even with predictable storytelling tropes, Fatherhood provides a wholesome experience into the meaning of being a parent.

After the unexpected death of his wife, Matt (Kevin Hart) is left on his own to raise their newborn daughter.  Within a typical family drama outline, the filmmakers build a foundation around a slice of life motif.  Using the drop-in method, we are introduced to Matt at a funeral.  Through a series of flashbacks, we learn that after giving birth, his wife tragically dies at the hospital.  This leads to another series of conversational moments that help Matt come to terms with the present.  From this point, it becomes a journey of a character facing consequences of the unknown.  Through each situation, the film builds upon the slice of life motif through a series of comical hijinks, random encounters and familial dynamics.  These whimsical but realistic scenes between Matt and Maddy counters the standard archetypes and obvious clichés, creating scenes of sentiment and worth.  It also provides a window of the definite struggles of being a single parent, creating situation of realistic hardship and warmth.  As Matt finds his way in raising Maddy, the genuine development of this has a strong ripple effect with his other relationships in the film.  With his family and friends, there is a hearty dynamic that is relatable in the basic outline of this family drama.   

The film takes a time leap forward, showing how strong but unique the bond has been solidified.  With this shift, it leads into new situations that explore dating, school and career development within the single parent theme.  Predictable hijinks continue, but the strength of the father/daughter relationship continues to lift above anything that might seem cheesy or unbecoming of a generic script.  As new avenues open, it creates honest questions of what it means to raise a child alone.  This leads into a third act of obvious consequences, building towards a climax of reflection and endearment.  Fatherhood builds upon predictability to create something wholesome.  If you like family dramas, this is one for you.  It is a Netflix Original but be a good time at the theaters for the right price.

Full Score – 3 out of 5 (Theater Discount)

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