It's a little hard to imagine Tom Hanks, everybody's friend, as a 60 year old curmudgeon, yelling at cats, kids, neighbors or anyone else who gets in his way but after 10 minutes, he is a good enough actor that you might just not like him for a few minutes. Plus do you really think he would fail at a few suicide attempts?
Why the grumpy old man? Why the suicide attempts? Both are the heart of the movie and what will bring tears to your eyes as you find the reason he will harass a clerk over 33 cents in a hardware store or yell at a woman who allows her dog to urinate on his lawn.
The story really comes to life when a new family moves into the home across the street and they keep on reaching out to the old man Otto who wants nothing to do with the husband, wife and 2 kids, with the wife expecting another child. It is the woman Marisol who as stubborn as Otto won't give up. Little by little, mainly with food and laughter, she gets through to him though it may be too late.
Mariana Trevino, as Marisol, and Hanks, have great chemistry and working together the laughter and warmth comes across to the audience as a believable connection. A scene concerning Otto having a 'big heart, makes Marisol laugh so hard the audience has to join her!
This is an old-fashion movie with cute kids, a cute cat, unnecessary story lines invented all leading up to an ending you will know from the moment the movie starts and will affect you just as it wanted to.
Along with Trevino we also meet Truman Hanks who plays his father as the younger man in flashbacks, meeting cute with Rachel Keller who he eventually marries.The son does his father proud and the resemblance.
"A Man Called Otto" is the old type of film that tears at your heartstrings and succeeds in getting you to shed a tear or two even though you know you are being manipulated from the very beginning. It is about 15-20 minutes too long but just lean back and enjoy watching Trevino dare Hanks not to like her and watch the (non-romantic) sparks between them or when he turns into the softie we know him as.