I found this gem of a movie while I was trolling the internet for Feel Good Movies (FGM)
That’s not just the name of the movie, it describes the movie perfectly.
Marvellous is actually a TV movie (movie made only for Television screening) and is based on a real life story. Neil Baldwin, the person who has inspired the movie is hale and hearty and just celebrated his 70th birthday party in March. What is interesting about this party is that it was attended by friends and family, professional footballers and football administrators, members of the clergy, professional actors and screenwriters, impresarios of the circus, Keele University professors, students and graduates, local dignitaries, singers from the Neil Baldwin Choir, three Cambridge University Boat Club rowers, and members of the Neil Baldwin Football Club. The highlight was a birthday greeting by video-link from Sir Alex Ferguson. Vice-Chancellor Professor Trevor McMillan remarked that “Only Neil could bring together people from such diverse walks of life to celebrate his birthday” (Thank you Wikipedia for this piece of information!)
So this man knows a whole lot of people. And is a registered clown. And has Learning Disability.
What the movie brought to me was how unfortunate we normal people are. Normal as in, you know, with average IQ. That is one way to gauge normalcy. There are many other ways, but that we shall file away under Random Musings section. Simply because we are so easy to train! We get trained to set our expectations, trained to think, to act, to be. We are so easy to define because we get our boundaries set. Either by experiences or by teachings! We become SO LIMITED. While THEY are LIMITLESS.
We label them as People with Special Needs. But in fact, they are simply Special. You will understand when you watch the movie. There are many movies that have touched on the subject of learning disabilities and other psychologically profiled illnesses. What this movie brings forth is that in spite of what we would view as roadblocks or impossibilities, there is this man who simply does what he wants to with the belief that he will achieve his goal.
Nello manages to be gainfully employed without asking for special privileges, makes friends from all walks of life – young and old, and believes that everything is possible if you just ask. His special skill includes Vicar Spotting – pointing out which priest is in line to be chosen as Bishop. And he did manage a football team as well.
Toby Jones, who plays Neil Baldwin in the movie, does a wonderful job. You don’t feel sorry for the character. You will be amazed at the strength of the man. And you would wish to be blessed by half the perseverance and faith that this man has.
Mrs. Baldwin, like any mother, is worried about her son. Worried about how he would survive without her looking out for him. Gemma Jones, who plays this character, won a BAFTA for her role. Mrs. Baldwin is forever worried about Neil, but he manages to surprise her every single time.
There are certain scenes that remains with me – how Neil would wait at a corner for a lift. Because someone would come and offer him a lift. Or how he would play tricks on his team members when they would pick on him. Or the reason he is so positive and happy is because he just decided to be positive and happy. All the time!
If you want to watch a FGM, this definitely should be on your list. You will keep smiling throughout the movie and after the movie and generally have a great day. I can vouch for this since I am still smiling as I write this. Although, NOTE: this is not such a fast paced movie. Hang in there. It is totally worth it.
I give it 4 clown hats!
P.S. Neil Baldwin – Totally Google Worthy!
Enjoy the trailer 😀