A Look at the Movies

Rated PG-13

1 hour 41 minutes

Chris Evans, Octavia Spencer, Mckenna Grace, Lindsay Duncan

CHICOPEE, Mass. (WWLP) – How can a gifted child lead what’s known as a normal life? A good question that “Gifted” travels the high road trying to answer intelligently.

The child’s uncle, Chris Evans, tackles this dilemma of raising a seven-year-old mathematical genius, who’s obviously not like the other kids. But, newcomer McKenna Grace knows how to give a convincing performance as the petulant prodigy.

She’s quite a handful, getting on her teacher’s nerves as any frustrated seven-year-old genius does to attract attention. When the smarmy teacher has the child figure out in head, “what’s 57 multiplied by 135?” she takes only a few seconds to reply, “75,685, with the square root of 87.7.”

Beneath the child’s brainiac brashness lurks a sweet natured seven-year-old trapped with the intellect of a college professor. The plot accelerates into conflict, when snooty grandmother Lindsey Duncan insists the child grow up in a more rarified intellectual atmosphere, in order to realize her full potential.

This is where the audience can take sides deciding what’s best for the conflicted little girl. Just don’t get into a fight with the person sitting next to you in the theater, while you’re debating what’s best for little Mary.

“Gifted” is an engrossing drama that has that kind of involving effect on the audience. I’m glad to see Chris Evans doing some serious acting between his more frivolous assignments as Captain America.

“Gifted” raises real life questions and even takes a stab at providing the answers. “Gifted” will give you good reason to honor this lovely film with 3 stars.

And to think there’s not a single car chase…How did they manage that???