A young Hungarian girl struggles to find her place in the world when she's reunited with her parents in the USA years after she was left behind during their flight from the communist country in the 1950s.
A young woman, Pursy (played by Scarlett Johansson), learns that her estranged mother has died in New Orleans. She returns to her mother's house to discover that it is inhabited by two men, one an aging alcoholic, Bobby Long (John Travolta). Written by
Writer/director Shainee Gabel adapted the screenplay from the previously unpublished novel "Off Magazine Street" by Ronald Everett Capps. Capps' son, Grayson Capps, appears in the film and contributed six songs to its soundtrack. See more »
In the beginning of the film Bobby has a slipper on his left foot. A couple of streets farther he has a slipper on his right foot. See more »
If you like movies that are character driven, then this is one for you to watch.
I have never seen Scarlett Johanssen in anything before. I have to say she impressed me here with her performance as Pursalane Hominy Will (ain't that a mouthful of a name!). Travolta does a nice turn as the titular Bobby Long, a former English professor who has fallen into the depths of an alcohol induced fantasy life. Gabriel Macht also does a good job as Lawson Pines, Bobby Long's former teaching assistant who has accompanied Long into his descent out of a sense of loyalty and guilt.
Perhaps the most interesting character, to me, is the one you never see, Lorraine Will; a New Orleans diva and the mother of young Pursey. Lorraine's death from alcoholism is what brings our characters together, and much like Alex in The Big Chill, we never once see or hear from Lorraine (not even in voice-over when Pursey reads a letter never sent to her by Lorraine), but we experience her through the people in this movie. It is a brave choice for the director to make, as I believe others would opt for more direct exposition via flashback, voice-overs, etc.
In the end, while there is a certain formulaic approach to the story, the characters are done well enough that you enjoy the story anyway.
56 of 65 people found this review helpful.
Was this review helpful to you?