REVIEW – PENRITH PRESS

    Personally I love watching movies that hit you on a deep emotional level.

    As a necessity we desensitise ourselves from so much that when a film like Matching Jack arrives, it reminds us that we are still human and able to feel something.

    In the case of this great Australian film it’s compassion to the enth degree.

    Jacinda Barrett and Richard Roxburgh star as parents Marissa and David, whose son Jack is diagnosed with leukaemia.

    The only way to save Jack is to find someone with a rare bone marrow match for him.

    However, what follows is far from the typical “parents search for a cure” plot.

    It turns out David has been sleeping with many women behind Marissa’s back for years.

    In fact, he was actually planning on leaving his wife for Veronica (Yvonne Strahovski) when he learns of Jack’s illness.

    A distraught Marissa discovers a diary kept by David that lists all his indiscretions, so she uses it to track down all his past flings in the hope he fathered a child that would be a genetic match for Jack.

    It’s an interesting twist that helps the viewer connect with Marissa’s struggle even more.

    While confronting the women David has betrayed her with could be disastrous for her own psyche, she does so for the love of her son.

    Where this movie truly shines is in the relationship Jack (Tom Russell) develops in hospital with another boy suffering from leukaemia, Finn (Kodi Smit-McPhee).

    Finn’s illness is far more progressed but his father Connor (James Nesbitt) hasn’t given up hope that his son will be cured.

    His quirky ways of bringing cheer to his son and strength to Marissa are inspiring.

    Director Nadia Tass handles the material well, avoiding cliches and cheap emotional ploys to make us feel for her characters.

    If you don’t feel moved watching this then I’m sorry, there’s something wrong with you.

    Matching Jack allows us insight into a world that unfortunately is a reality for so many families. You may cry, you may not – but it will definitely stir your emotions.

    - Penrith Press

    Link: www.penrith-press.whereilive.com.au

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