Gifted

A light and likeable drama from (500) Days Of Summer director Marc Webb, who is on what seems to be more comfortable ground after back-to-back superhero movies. Coincidentally, this drama stars Captain America Chris Evans, playing an apparent maths genius named Frank, a man who has turned his back on academia for a stress-free life of boat repairing. The film’s about his relationship with niece Mary (McKenna Grace), a gifted child who he is raising and sending to a ‘normal’ school, and the custody battle that ensues when Frank’s estranged mother (Mary’s grandmother) insists on Mary being tutored. There are a handful of decent courtroom scenes and some syrupy, warm moments between Mary and her surrogate father, which are often pleasingly witty. Webb seems to like precocious child characters, as there was also one in Summer, and I guess the nicest thing I can think to say about this film is that said character here isn’t too annoying and the film in its entirety is better than it sounds on paper. (***)