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Joseph Svenden is a middle-aged schoolteacher who lives on a farm with his dying mother. In his simple life there are no excitements, even in long-time relationship with a widow. However, ... See full summary »
At Phoenix Progressive School, where everyone tries to outdo each other with creative self-expression, 16-year-old Molly Maxwell (Lola Tash) would rather be invisible than risk revealing ... See full summary »
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Willis Earl Beal,
At her father's funeral, Junior Talmadge remembers back 30 years to the last time she saw her Dad: the summer of 1979. Junior was graduating from college and had just gotten engaged. Her ... See full summary »
Gifted 18-year-old Meg has been abandoned by her father and neglected by her hardworking mother. Left to care for her emotionally disturbed younger sister, her world begins to unravel. She finds an outlet in writing poetry and support from her English teacher, Mr. Auster. But what started out as a mentoring relationship begins to get a bit more complex. Written by
The film premiered at the Sundance Film Festival in January, 2002. See more »
When Meg changes to join Auster and family on the beach, she has on a red bikini and over it, a red sweater. She has the sweater on when she gets there. But later, when Auster asks to "walk her home," she does not have the sweater, and Auster has to lend her his gray sweater to keep her warm. See more »
A world emerges from little details. For example, when we buried my son, I had forgotten to put in my contact lenses. I stood over him before they closed the coffin, trying to fix him in my memory. I could see the red from his sweater and his blue pants, and there was a scab on his forehead that hadn't healed. It was from a bicycle accident. I could feel that scab when I kissed him, but when I looked at him... he was out of focus.
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It's always nice to come across a little gem of a film like this one is. The characters are crafted so well that there is nary a false note in the entire piece. The dynamics between the daughter (Meg) and her mother, Meg and her sister, and Meg and her teacher all ring true; at times painfully so. As things so often occur in real life, this was no neat little package of events and resolutions but characters stumbling through situations making good and bad decisions and coming out on the other side having learned something from their experiences.
Why can't everyone write like this! Kudos to Karen Moncrief for showing such great respect for her audience. I hope you have many more opportunities to add to your writing and directing resume. I've seen tons of films and very few of them are standouts. This is one of them.
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