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Winter in hard-scrabble upstate New York. Irene is working class, a mother of two boys, and a user of cocaine. She gets into trouble and checks into a rehab program where she meets Bob, a nurse. After she goes home to her husband and returns to her job as a grocery checker, she stays in touch with Bob and the intimations of an affair begin. By now, she's changed jobs, cleaning houses with her friend Lucy. The temptations of drugs are close at hand. Can she handle sobriety? What about Bob? Written by
Bleak and depressing and not particularly captivating
Given the subject matter of drug addiction Down to the Bone almost can't help but be a rather depressing film. But depressing doesn't necessarily have to mean bad. Unfortunately in this case it is in fact pretty bad. The film has some good things going for it, most notably the quality performance of Vera Farmiga in the central role of Irene, a working mom struggling with a cocaine addiction. But there isn't enough good here to outweigh the bad. The film's failings lie mainly with the story, which fails to captivate and never really seems to get going. Irene goes to rehab and comes home to a clueless husband who has no idea how to support her attempt to kick her habit. Irene grows close to another recovering addict, a male nurse from her rehab center. Complications ensue. But the story never really sparks to life. It doesn't seem as if the movie is really going anywhere. You can say it's a stark, realistic look at the day-to-day struggles of an addict. Maybe so but in this case it doesn't make for an interesting movie. The whole thing has a very "blah" feel to it. The minimalist cinematography doesn't help matters, adding another layer of drab to the incredibly drab proceedings. And none of the other performances measure up to Farmiga's. Hugh Dillon is OK as Irene's male nurse friend but nobody else in the cast adds anything of value to the proceedings. All in all this movie is a bleak, depressing and rather dull ride.
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