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In LA, Jason Lair is recently separated, living with his grandfather and his son; he's a banker, tense, with a limp. Grandfather Henry, an archaeologist, wants to take the family van on a trip to Albuquerque. His plans are interrupted when Turner, Jason's father and Henry's son, appears after years of absence. Henry wants to celebrate family, as does Zach, Jason's son; Jason is angry and distant, Turner seems detached and says he's got a bus to catch in the morning. This prompts Henry to put in place an elaborate plan that will send his "tribe" on that VW bus trip to New Mexico sorting out relationships and digging up a crippled family history. Dust and dogs figure prominently. Written by
Extremely touching road movie around four generations of males whose relationships have become fractured in the past.
It's not made completely clear at the start, but Michael Caine is the great grandfather, Christopher Walken is the grandfather, Josh Lucas the father and the charming Jonah Bobo as the grandson. The family are reunited and Caine's character tasks them with a request in his will that his ashes be scattered near his favourite fast food restaurants throughout picturesque New Mexico (bizarre product placement).
Walken had disappeared from the family unit, with some resentment from all, and returns to the family and finds himself agreeing to fulfil his father's wishes. Throughout the journey, the family bonds are re-established and a gradual understanding of the characters grows and their past revealed.
This is a beautiful story, told at a gentle but entrancing pace, is truly moving and I recommend it highly. It's not very long, but within Walken is given great time and space to truly demonstrate his talents.
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