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Red Dirt (2000)

 -  Drama  -  17 March 2000 (USA)
6.3
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Ratings: 6.3/10 from 814 users  
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Red Dirt offers the story of a young man's search to belong in this sublime expression of love and reconciliation. At only twenty, Griffith is struggling with the responsibilities of caring... See full summary »

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Title: Red Dirt (2000)

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Cast

Cast overview:
Dan Montgomery Jr. ...
Griffith Joseph Burns (as Dan Montgomery)
...
Emily Whaley
...
Peg O'Keef ...
Lynn Thomas
...
Virgil Cunningham
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Customer in shop (as Jo Ann Robinson)
...
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Red Dirt offers the story of a young man's search to belong in this sublime expression of love and reconciliation. At only twenty, Griffith is struggling with the responsibilities of caring for his unwell aunt, grieving the loss of their family's matriarch, and his own dreams of leaving Pine Apple. With the arrival of a stranger, Griffith's carefully constructed walls of shame and silence begin to come down and his life takes an unexpected turn. Written by Anonymous

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User Reviews

 
A story of love outside of the gay-straight linear mindset
21 February 2005 | by (United Kingdom) – See all my reviews

Red Dirt is a story with two main themes: claustro- and agoraphobia, literal in the case of our protagonists' dotty Aunt Summer, and more abstract in the portrayal of cousins Griffith (desperate to escape town) and Emily (resigned to sharing her female relatives' fate of never leaving); and the difficulty and pain of expressing love, and changes in love. When a stranger, Lee, comes to stay at their farm, he acts as a catalyst that eventually brings all their secrets out of the woodwork, and it hurts as much as it sets everyone free.

In today's world of determinist sexuality and identity politics, it's clear why this film goes down like a ton of bricks with some people - many won't find it satisfying to watch a story of people falling in (and out) of love with no neat labels that can be attached to their desires. Even more disturbing to some will be the hint that love and sex are not the same thing. Yet this is exactly what I found so moving about this film, and such a welcome change from the teenager-coming-out stock of gay films that, despite being of some value to those that need them, have become tedious to those that no longer do. Fond as I am of man-on-man action, and not being much of a romantic, I was therefore very surprised to be so moved by a film simply about love, and not to have to suffer through another truckload of big-city gay clichés.

The acting, cinematography and photography are all superb - I could have done with a little less of the weepy soundtrack but really that's a tiny quibble.


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