In an economically devastated Alaskan town, a fisherman with a troublesome past dates a woman whose young daughter does not approve of him. When he witnesses the murder of his shady brother, he, the woman and the kid run to the wilderness.
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Limbo tells the story of people trying to reinvent themselves in the Southeastern islands of Alaska. The story revolves around Joe Gastineau, a fisherman traumatised by an accident at sea years before, singer Donna de Angelo and her disaffected daughter Noelle who come into Joe's life. When Joe's fast-talking half-brother Bobby returns to town and asks Joe for a favor, the lives of the characters are changed forever. Written by
In a scene near the beginning Donna (Mastrantonio) and Joe (Straithairn) are riding in his truck. Donna's cigarette smoke is blowing away behind her and in close-up her hair is moving, but throughout the scene you can see the windows are obviously both closed. See more »
Where are we?
It's a little inlet, on the back side of Coashov Island
Is that like up Shit Creek without a paddle?
Yeah, pretty much.
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Realistic Slice of Life Ruined by Gimmicky Conclusion
"Limbo" continues John Sayles travels around the continent to find distinctive regionalisms and he portrays small town Alaska with a real authentic feel.
The audio and video were out of synch for the first 15 minutes so I missed some of a key scene where the singer breaks up with her boyfriend through a song, which was too bad as the cover songs are terrific, from Tom Waits to Richard Thompson's "Dimming of the Day."
The acting was excellent, particularly, Vanessa Martinez as a very believable teenager. David Strathairn was both restrained and passionate. I just wasn't completely convinced that Mary Elizabeth Mastrantonio's character had gone through changes to be at peace with herself. Kris Kristofferson again does a bad guy scarily convincingly.
But the surprise "limbo" conclusion ruined the film for me and virtually everyone else in the audience also groaned.
(originally written 7/12/1999)
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