In New York City's Harlem circa 1987, an overweight, abused, illiterate teen who is pregnant with her second child is invited to enroll in an alternative school in hopes that her life can head in a new direction.
A fisheries expert is approached by a consultant to help realize a sheik's vision of bringing the sport of fly-fishing to the desert and embarks on an upstream journey of faith and fish to prove the impossible possible.
A man who lost his family in the September 11 attack on New York City runs into his old college roommate. Rekindling the friendship is the one thing that appears able to help the man recover from his grief.
Jada Pinkett Smith
Two grieving women - Ria, a Dublin mom whose husband discloses he's in love with a woman already pregnant, and Marilyn, a Connecticut Yankee whose son has died - swap houses for a couple months. Marilyn finds solace in Ria's garden and becomes friends with Colm, a local with a restaurant and his own demons. Ria gets a job cooking, has a date or two, and gradually comes out of her shell. Meanwhile, Ria's husband Danny has problems, economic and personal, that may bring more ruin to those close to him. The house on Tara Road comes to stand for the past, for possibilities, and for what can be lost. Written by
Maeve Binchy, author of the novel on which the movie is based, makes an uncredited cameo as a restaurant patron. She can be glimpsed seated at the end of the bar, right after the scene where Ria offers to take the job advertised at the restaurant cashier's counter. See more »
TARA ROAD is a thickly populated movie that reaches for the female audience and succeeds in addressing old problems of infidelity and marriage conflicts. The problem is the story by highly published Irish author Maeve Binchy (adapted from Binchy's novel for the screen by Cynthia Cidre) is 'used goods' and while there are many moments of touching dialog there are equal moments of sham resolutions that in the end prove disappointing despite the cast of actors portraying these only occasionally interesting characters.
Two women, each bruised by life events, trade homes (Dublin, Ireland and Connecticut) to find the space to recover. In Connecticut, Marilyn (Andie MacDowell) is recovering from the accidental motorcycle (a birthday gift from his father Greg - August Zirner) death of her young son: grief has made her withdraw and lose her feelings for Greg. In Dublin, Ireland Ria (Olivia Williams) is blissfully happy in her beautiful home on Tara Road which she shares with her two children and her newly discovered unfaithful husband Danny (Iain Glen) - a lothario who has had affairs with Ria's best friend Rosemary (Maria Doyle Kennedy) and now confesses to the pregnancy of his current mistress Bernadette (Heike Makatsch). In too quick an instance Ria and Marilyn decide to swap homes with the hope that separation form their families will give them room to readjust to life. Each woman encounters the friends and neighbors of the other: Marilyn meets restaurateur Colm (Stephen Rea) among Ria's odd assortment of acquaintances while Ria encounters the brother of Greg and some intrusive and over the top friends of Marilyn. Gradually it all comes to a very predictable conclusion that simply solves too many problems too easily.
Director Gillies MacKinnon seems to have difficulty deciding how to maintain a tone for the film - a tearjerker versus a situation comedy. There are moments when the audience connects with some of the characters, but these are too few and separated by far too many stretches of weak writing. Despite some fine acting the movie never quite flies. Grady Harp
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