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Adult siblings Sammy Prescott and Terry Prescott have had a special bond with each other since they were kids when their parents were tragically killed in a car accident. That bond is why single mom Sammy, who still lives in the family home in Scottsville, upstate New York with her eight year old son Rudy, is excited to hear that Terry, who she has not seen or heard from in a while, is coming home for a visit. That excitement is dampened slightly upon Terry's arrival, when she learns that he, broke, is only there to borrow money. As adults, Sammy, who works as a lending officer in the local bank, is seen as the responsible sibling, while unfocused Terry is seen as the irresponsible drifter. Regardless, Sammy welcomes what ends up being Terry's longer than planned visit if only so that he can help take care of Rudy, who has no adult male figure in his life. Rudy has never known his deadbeat biological father, with whom Sammy wants nothing to do. As Terry - acting as the supposed adult ... Written by
Kenneth Lonergan plays minister Ron in two major scenes counseling Terry at Sammy's house, and then counseling Sammy in his office. Since Lonergan had a lot of dialogue in those two scenes, he turned over the directing to Laura Linney and Mark Ruffalo, respectively. See more »
The film is set in Scottsville, New York, which is in the far
west of the state, south of Rochester. However, a sign is seen for NY Rt28, which does not run anywhere near Scottsville. This is because the film was shot in and around Phonecia, New York, through which NY Rt28 runs. See more »
[as they get in the car]
Where are we going?
To pick up Rudy.
What, do you not even want me to come visit now?
Of course I want you to visit, you idiot! I've been looking forward to seeing you from the moment I got your letter, I told everyone in town that you were coming home, I cleaned the whole *fucking* house just so it would look nice for you! I had no idea you were just broke again! I wish you'd just send me an invoice!
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Jeffrey Sharp would like to dedicate his work on this film to his mother, Virginia Sharp Albright, with love and admiration. See more »
A quick glimpse at others' comments here confirms what I suspected when I finally caught this flick on video myself -- it is something of a Rorschach test for viewers. I notice that there are people who absolutely identify with Laura Linney's character, Sammy, and others who completely see the film from the point of view of Mark Ruffalo's character, Terry. I think this is a sign of a good film. I myself was prepared to dislike Terry because he seemed such an obvious mess, but the film allows him his own point of view that you come to respect. And I am not a religious person at all -- in fact, I have major issues with organized religion -- but I was impressed with the even-handed, sympathetic treatment of religion here, and also of small-town life -- both very rare in American movies. The cast is uniformly good -- in addition to everybody mentioned in others' comments here, I'd single out Jon Tenney as Sammy's well-meaning, on-again off-again boyfriend -- but Linney was simply phenomenal. See this, if only to see how *you* react to it.
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