'Collateral Beauty' Couldn't Be Timelier

by Amen Oyiboke

Will Smith is at it again with another tear-jerking family movie. In the upcoming holiday drama Collateral Beauty, Smith plays an ordinary advertising executive fighting the demons of his daughter's death. As its trailers show, Collateral Beauty , out Dec. 16, promises to force audiences to evaluate the focal points of their lives, from their longing for love to their fear of death to their desire for more time. “We’re here to connect,” Smith says in the trailer. “Love, time, death: these three things connect every single human being on Earth. We long for love, we wish we had more time, and we fear death.” And with its holiday season release, Collateral Beauty seems like the kind of emotional movie perfect for the holiday season.

In the film, Howard (played by Smith) distances himself from the outside world after experiencing the death of his daughter. Rather than turn to the people in his life as a way of coping, he begins to write letters to three subjects: time, love and death. The kicker in the film is when Howard's letters manifest into actual physical entities that try to help him understand that the three things he is writing to are the things that will help him move forward. Death comes in the form of Helen Mirren, love comes as Keira Knightley, and time comes in the form of Jacob Latimore. They represent the three pillars of humanity that connect each and every person on Earth in a common foundation, and through them, Howard begins to find some type of faith and hope in discovering the beauty of life once again.

It may sound overly sincere, but it'll also undoubtedly leave audiences wondering about the three pillars of humanity as shown in their own lives, and how they view navigate the world through the decisions they make. It's an especially fitting message in light of our current social and political climate. Coming out of an election where there was mud-slinging from every corner, it's time to think about what changes we each might want to make in our lives going into 2017. Even more, Collateral Beauty might act as an important reminder for all of us to strip down to the cores of who we are in a divisive time like this, and use our inner strength to get us through any setbacks or challenges we face.

This movie truly couldn't have come at a better time, as right now, so many people are reflecting on how love can help change out social climate as well as the way we perceive ourselves. And its focus on time — how it's not a prediction of our own mentalities, but a predicate to move consciously in our purpose — feels as relevant as ever.

Images: New Line Cinema