With a job traveling around the country firing people, Ryan Bingham enjoys his life living out of a suitcase, but finds that lifestyle threatened by the presence of a new hire and a potential love interest.
Mavis Gary, once the high school 'It Girl', now an alcoholic divorcée who writes a soon to be canceled young adult fiction series, makes the decision to return to her childhood home in Minnesota. There she embarks on a plan to win back her former sweetheart, Buddy. The fact that Buddy is now married with a baby doesn't dissuade her. Along the way, she forms a bond with Matt Freehauf, another former classmate, who has been left disabled by a beating he took from a bunch of jocks. Written by
The highway signs (I-35, I-535 & US Hwy 53) outside the Hampton Inn that Mavis checks into would seem to place Mercury, MN in the Duluth area, but the strip mall next door features a Chuck E. Cheese's, Raymour & Flanigan Furniture, and Liquid Ice. The nearest Chuck E. Cheese's are several hours away in the Minneapolis area. Raymour & Flanigan and Liquid Ice are chains only found in the Northeastern US (PA, NY, New England), and a highway sign seen after the interstate signs at the hotel is a New York State Route 35 sign supports that. See more »
This is one of those films you read about and really look forward to; but, once seen, you realize that, while good, it's not quite worthy of the build up.
Charlize Theron is quite good and makes the most of the script she has to work with. As always, hers eyes, facial expression and body language all help her bring life to the role.
Patton Oswalt also does a star turn as a bit of conscience for Charlize's character.
The story is well told, albeit a bit of a stretch. For someone reaching back to her past for a lost love, Charlize's character is quite believable; it's her long ago beau, Patrick Wilson, that's not quite up to snuff. Given that these two play off each other for a great deal of the film, it would be nicer to have had a better performer opposite her.
That said, it's worth watching, though probably a bit depressing for many viewers.
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