A massage therapist looking to overcome her addictions and reconnect with her son, whose father is an anthropologist in South America studying the Yanomani people, moves in with a wealthy ex-client in New Jersey.
After a blurred trauma over the summer, Melinda enters high school a selective mute. Struggling with school, friends, and family, she tells the dark tale of her experiences, and why she has chosen not to speak.
Robert John Burke
A series of overlapping stories about four suburban families dealing with different maladies. Esther Gold's life is consumed by caring for her comatose son; Jim Train is sent into a ... See full summary »
An aspiring author during the civil rights movement of the 1960s decides to write a book detailing the African-American maids' point of view on the white families for which they work, and the hardships they go through on a daily basis.
Bryce Dallas Howard
Trapped in his mother's Lower East Side apartment, sixteen-year-old Finn wants nothing more than to escape New York and spend the summer in South America studying the Iskanani Indians, or "Fierce People," with the anthropologist father he's never met. But Finn's dreams are shattered when he is arrested in a desperate effort to help his drug-dependent mother, Liz, who scrapes by working as a masseuse. Determined to get their lives back on track, Liz moves the two of them into a guest house on the vast country estate of her ex-client, the aging aristocratic billionaire, Ogden C. Osbourne. In Osbourne's close world of privilege and power, Finn and Liz encounter a tribe fiercer and more mysterious than anything they might find in the South American jungle: the super rich. While Liz battles her substance abuse and struggles to win back her son's love and trust, Finn falls in love with Osbourne's beautiful granddaughter, Maya, befriends her charismatic older brother, Bryce, and even wins ... Written by
Eddie Rosales who played the shaman in the movie's dream sequence was actually speaking in Filipino. See more »
When the police car takes them away from their apartment it has a stop light out, but when it is arriving at the country house the light is fixed. See more »
There's this tribe in South America called the Ishcanani. That means fierce people.
They're. They're like the meanest people in the world. They'll cut off your thumbs, and they'll shit in your hammock just like we say hello.
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I literally have no idea how to rate this movie. It comes in two halves, and I quite liked both of them, but the two halves belong to completely different films. Have you ever been driving down a quiet country road near your house, taken a left turn and suddenly found yourself in Helmand Province, Afghanistan? That's what this movie is like - there's a tonal shift around the halfway mark that's so jarring, so out of place with what's gone before, that it left me utterly dumbfounded, staring at the screen, saying over and over 'That didn't really happen, did it?'
If I've got trouble with it, I can only take pity on the people who had to market this movie. It's a pretty light comedy for the first half - all wacky families, odd-but-cute kid taking his first steps towards manhood, that sort of thing, and it's all very well done. And at the centre of it all is Donald Sutherland, never better in the role of a patriarch who has made scads of money, but lost out in many other ways. It's light and frothy and amusing and - then. Then the event happens, and everything turns VERY dark indeed. The second half plays more like a socially conscious melodrama, with teenage pregnancy, class division and... other issues. It's good too, for what it is, but that seismic shift in the middle of the film makes it all pretty hard to stomach.
So do I recommend this movie or not? Hell, I don't know. Both its parts are very good, but they add up to a baffling whole. I realize that that isn't necessarily very helpful, but you probably ought to be warned that this has been marketed as a comedy, and an enjoyable coming of age movie. That's true, but only up until the halfway mark...
9 of 16 people found this review helpful.
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