Caring for someone gives one’s life a purpose.
This may sound clichéd for a message in a film yet when it is the true story of one’s life, the message feels different. Directed by Charles Martin Smith, whose works include Dolphin Tale and A Dog’s Way Home, the mutual need of love and affection between Bob the cat and his owner James is well portrayed, even appreciable for those that aren’t into pets.
A Christmas Gift From Bob is the sequel to A Street Cat Named Bob and is based on its novel, a real-life tale of now famous author and musician James Bowen and his ginger cat Bob’s last Christmas spent together on the streets. If you haven’t seen the first film which is the story of how they met, Bob the cat came into James’ life at exactly the right time. James Bowen credits Bob for giving him the strength to get clean from drugs, stay off the streets and, as a reason for living.
The movie is slow-paced which may not suit all audiences, yet this pace is necessary as it reflects the nature of the duo’s life at the time. James Bowen is played by Luke Treadaway, Bob as himself, and the screenplay written by Garry Jenkins. Bob the cat died shortly after the production of this film and this is his final performance.
A Christmas Gift From Bob is the story of James’ interaction with the council and animal welfare, who are trying to take Bob the cat away from him at Christmas time. Apart from themes of friendship and what makes a family, it has an underlying theme of Karma; much of James’s dialogue with nearby shopkeeper Moody (Phaldut Sharma) is in parables. Fortunately for busker James Bowen, he is met with unexpected kindnesses just in time for the festive season.
If the events of 2020 have been a rough year for you, this film will provide you with encouragement, inspiration, and merriment for the rest of the year.
A Christmas Gift From Bob opens on December 3rd