After being denied a promotion at the university where she teaches, Doctor Lily Penleric, a brilliant musicologist, impulsively visits her sister, who runs a struggling rural school in ...
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After being denied a promotion at the university where she teaches, Doctor Lily Penleric, a brilliant musicologist, impulsively visits her sister, who runs a struggling rural school in Appalachia. There she stumbles upon the discovery of her life - a treasure trove of ancient Scots-Irish ballads, songs that have been handed down from generation to generation, preserved intact by the seclusion of the mountains. With the goal of securing her promotion, Lily ventures into the most isolated areas of the mountains to collect the songs and finds herself increasingly enchanted - not only by the rugged purity of the music, but also by the raw courage and endurance of the local people as they carve out meaningful lives against the harshest conditions. It is not, however, until she meets Tom - a handsome, hardened war veteran and talented musician - that she's forced to examine her motivations. Is the "Songcatcher," as Tom insists, no better than the men who exploit the people and extort their ... Written by
Sujit R. Varma
Kudzu is shown growing in the forest. Kudzu was introduced into Appalachia in the 1930s from Japan to slow erosion. Kudzu would not have been present during the period this movie covers. (Keeping in mind, of course, that in order to produce a film about the Appalachians WITHOUT the kudzu would of course require filming in another region, as to date there have been very few if any successful attempts at denuding their fast-paced growth.) See more »
Finally, a movie that does not insult your intelligence. No anorexic Barbie dolls, or exploding cars, so beloved by the 100% red blooded American male. Aidan Quinn, who I could "take or leave" in previous performances delivers a masterful performance, in my opinion. Janet Mcteer whose character is the "glue", holding the story together, also justifies her selection for this role. But the "revelation" of the film, is the performance of Pat Carroll as Viney Butler. If this isn't Academy Award level acting then I haven't learned anything in over fifty years of filmgoing. The only way I remember her, is as a sometime guest on the Jack Paar show. I have not seen her act ever. I had no idea I was watching Pat Carroll untill I glanced at the box the video came in. I was incredulous! Completely gone was any characteristic of Pat Carroll, and in her place was this mountain woman, surviving for about seventy years in an enviornment that would give most of us nervous breakdowns. Pat, this role is truly your magnum opus! God bless you.
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