Following the death of his wife Audrey, John Munn moves with his two sons, mid-teen Chris Munn and adolescent Tim Munn, to a pig farm in rural Drees County, Georgia, where they lead a ... See full summary »
Two highway road workers spend the summer of 1988 away from their city lives. The isolated landscape becomes a place of misadventure as the men find themselves at odds with each other and the women they left behind.
On a cold afternoon, with snow on the ground, the high school band is practicing for the last football game. They hear shots. Flashback a few weeks before. Arthur is a high school student, bussing at a restaurant. Annie and Barb are waitresses there - Annie was Arthur's babysitter when he was little. She's now separated from her husband Glenn, who's on the wagon, starting a new job, praying to Jesus, and trying to prove he has his balance back so he can see more of their small daughter, Tara. Annie's seeing someone else, Arthur's parents have just separated, and Arthur is attracted to Lila, a new student at the high school. It's a small town, people's lives cross. Written by
Sam Rockwell really did hit his head on the truck, and punch the tree. (reference an interview at vimeo.com/859232) Previously he had gotten tips from a stunt man on how to head-bang the truck without hurting himself too much. However, when he hit the tree with his knuckles, he did it for real, and hard. He visited the hospital in the evening. See more »
In the scene where Arthur takes a swig from a bottle of beer hidden on the floor, he raises it with the label facing him. In the next cut scene, as he lowers the bottle, the label can be clearly seen facing the camera. See more »
She used to babysit me when i was younger, for years. She used to let me stay up til past midnight. I had a crush on her. I used to drop my toys on the floor. She'd have to bend down, pick them up, I could see right down her shirt. She stayed over once, my parents went out of town. And I saw her naked. I took my moms little make up mirror, tilted it under the bathroom door, watched her shower. She was beautiful.
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For some, the best type of films are those that are character-based: there is no action sequences, no huge stunts or explosions. Rather, there is a story that unfolds and is filled with quiet moments as well as more rambunctious ones that never go over the top into farce. Here, writer/director David Gordon Green handles strong and intense material, yet creates a moving and unforgettable piece of film-making that I will not soon forget.
In the same vein as American Beauty, Ordinary People and Little Children, this film explores the simple, everyday lives of people just trying to exist as best they can. People work at jobs they don't like, struggle to relate to their children, each other and themselves, and in this case deal with some unbelievable situations. In whatever case, Green keeps just the right amount of difference at the right time and then shoves it in our face exactly when we need it.
To assist him is the cast, which is uniformly excellent in its performances. Kate Beckinsale needs to concentrate on serious films after this really sharp and heartbreaking role as Annie, a single woman struggling to cope with her daughter who she doesn't truly understand and her estranged husband who she regrets not being able to fix her relationship with. The husband, Glenn, is played by Sam Rockwell in I think the film's best performance. Glenn is a struggling alcoholic who also is devoutly religious and the way he attempts to correlate the two elements is both cringing and stunning. The most effective relationship in the film is that between two high school students played by Michael Anagarano and Olivia Thirlby. How sweet and wonderful it is to see two people that truly seem to love, or at least trust, each other in order to have support for their problems. Here, Green seems to be teaching by showing that even young people can and do understand the seriousness and complexity of real relationships.
As I said before, this is a very sad film with most of the sadness directed at Annie and Glenn. What is even more sad is that they try to overcome their shortcomings by digging deeper holes. This is a film that evokes great empathy and you want to reach out to these people, knowing they are going to do something regrettable. One thing not regrettable is watching this film, which is simply-told, very powerful and forever unforgettable.
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