Rating: 2.5 out of 5.

Dramas don’t get much more intimate than Finch: a chronicle about a man, his dog, and a robot.

So the Earth has become a wasteland after a solar flare has scorched the Earth by ultraviolet radiation and increased the temperatures beyond living conditions. Certified national treasure Tom Hanks plays Finch Weinberg. The guy stays indoors most of the time, but he dons a special protective suit whenever he ventures outside for supplies. Finch is dying from cancer. So he builds a mechanical person (Caleb Landry Jones utilizing motion-capture) to be a companion for his canine Goodyear after he has passed on. When Finch hears of a major storm approaching, he decides to leave in a motor home toward San Francisco with his two companions.

There isn’t much to this story. Most of it centers on the interaction between Finch and the android who is developing a personality. We watch as the robot learns. Hanks gives yet another genuine, understated performance. Finch is cut from the same cloth as the characters Hanks played in Greyhound and News of the World. Meanwhile, the humanoid — who ultimately adopts the name Jeff — is reminiscent of other cinematic portrayals. Your references may vary. I thought of Pixar’s animated Wall-E (2008) but also “Johnny 5” in the 80s sci-fi comedy Short Circuit (1986). I never saw Chappie (2015) but I’ve heard that allusion as well. The post-apocalyptic tale is a serious account and it grows darker. However, Jeff has a cloying temperament throughout. Given the bare-bones plot, I found it hard to sit through.

The sweet, wholesome production is constantly trying to tug at your heartstrings. The nicest thing I can offer is that it’s inoffensive. When the robot isn’t acting cute, there’s also a puppy to melt your heart. This would have been more charming as an efficient 30 minute short. Stretched out to nearly two hours, it wears thin. Nevertheless, Tom Hanks is a star for a reason. He is undeniably likable, so if you are a major fan of his celebrity, then I suppose this will entertain you. The saga has its moments, but I was less enchanted by all the sentimentality.


2 Responses to “Finch”

  1. I was not engaged. It was ok. Just didn’t capture my complete attention. The dog was my favorite. 2 1/2 ⭐️

    Liked by 1 person

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