Least Among Saints (2012) Poster

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19 ReviewsOrdered By: Helpfulness
Compelling story and breakout performances
fshagan-113 October 2012
This movie hits the right note with both a compelling story and interesting characters. Writer, director and lead actor Martin Papazian's film packs an emotional punch without being maudlin or making you feel like your emotions have been manipulated.

The story is focused on the young war veteran, but doesn't stray into larger political issues. I found that refreshing in this political season. Instead, this is an intimate portrayal of human struggle, and Papazian imbues the lead character Anthony Hayward with the right level of emotion. Papazian has one of two breakout performances in the film. For me, the best films are those that show believable character development, and Papazian's portrayal is immensely satisfying.

The other performance I loved was by Tristan Lake Leabu who plays 10 year old Wade, Hayward's next door neighbor. I'm convinced Tristan is headed for a stellar career. There's a lot of emotion in his role, and a lesser actor would have over played it. You can see pain, a sense of isolation, and fear in his eyes.

The intimate feel of this film was enhanced by director of photography Guy Skinner and his hand-held camera work, known to most of us from his work on the TV series "24".

At the premier in Santa Monica, Martin Papazian said the story is a composite of experiences told to him by war vets. He listened.

Independent films often don't get noticed because of limited distribution. Moviegoers don't know if a film is worth driving to. If you get a chance, see this film.
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Beautiful Film/ Great Message/ A must see
prfri7329 October 2012
This was a heartfelt film is about two people one war vet and a young boy trying to heal after dealing with tragic loss. The story was very well written and the performances were outstanding. It was played so well that I could really feel the characters' pain and struggle becoming instantly involved. I especially enjoyed the chemistry between the boy and the war vet. The supporting characters also have their own stories as they relate to the two main characters (the boy and the soldier). There was a large continuum of emotion as the story played out, I cried but also found myself laughing out loud a few times as well. The cinematography and scenery were very entertaining and the close attention to details whether it be emotion, scenes, or fabric detail. Most of all, I enjoyed the message of the film as well as the human connection. I highly recommend this movie and look forward to seeing it again.
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Holding onto something meaningful
agapesophy4 August 2013
Warning: Spoilers
A man suffering the absurdity of life, ends up finding something meaningful in existence by caring for an Orphaned child by happenstance.

The critics who reviewed this movie are tragic, Plainly most people rated this movie, ten out of ten. Only men so far rated this movie one out of ten. If you take a look at the critics reviews, and look at the scoring this is really about how some men can not relate whatsoever in empathy, neither have the ability to relate as they do not develop attachments to anything other than themselves, and thus have no ability to understand this movie. As the critics claim this man suffers self pity, which he does not suffer at all.

He suffers the absurdity of life, that meaningless existence, to which people died and suffered in a meaningless matter, to which he has nothing meriting his own existence. Then through happenstance he ends up caring for an Orphaned child that has also suffered loss.

The story is not about a veteran, he happens to be a veteran, but the trauma of his life is about the meaninglessness of life to which he finds meaning caring for a child.

It is a simple Drama about a man willing to find some meaning in life by caring for an orphaned child , and it is a wonderful little simple story.
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An engaging, thoughtful, and very human story, very well told!
Jimmie Lunsford26 October 2012
I saw this movie last night, and I loved it!! This is a fabulous story, very well told, of an Iraq war veteran's life after he completes his military service. His struggles are hard, and of a nature that the far majority of us only read about. But, true to real life, he finds he's not alone in facing the truly heavy burdens of life, and though the struggles of others aren't from the same origin as his, the parallels that can be drawn between the different lives and worlds are logical, natural and yet, stark. The flow of the movie, the characters and their portrayals are excellent, I was engaged from the beginning. The story is realistic, true-to-life, and very touching. Even the film-making, the camera angles and attention to technique were skillfully planned and executed. It all combines to make a very real, moving, deeply thought-provoking film. I encourage everyone to see it!!
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"Least Among Saints"
Roseanne McIlvane28 October 2012
A moving story that is not sugar coated and deals with the many issues that veterans returning home from war experience but often not understood. They are casualties of war. I highly recommend taking the time to see this important film that was written with humanity & compassion. All the actors in this film were fantastic!! I really enjoyed the Q & A following the film with Martin Papazian, Writer/Director/Actor & Guy Skinner , Cinematograher!!! We also got to meet an important character in this movie, Milo! This allowed the audience to get the story behind the story from Mr. Papazian and his motivation for writing such a compelling story!
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An excellent film!
george880826 October 2012
I stumbled across this indie film in L.A., and was very pleasantly surprised! The lead character (played my Martin Papazian) grabbed my interest in the very first scene, and held it til the end, in a subtle, layered performance as a haunted war vet, that has us rooting for him despite his flaws, and very deserving of top critic Jeffrey Lyons calling him a "rising star". The supporting cast was equally strong, with such talented veterans as AJ Cook as the drugged out mother, Laura San Giacomo as the tough as nails, wise-cracking social worker, and the always powerful Charles S. Dutton as a police chief, plus many other great supporting performances, not the least of which was newcomer Tristan Lake Leabu as the kid. I heartily recommend this film - it's a real find!
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Amazing performances in this breakout indie flick! I loved it!
Alli C26 October 2012
Anthony (Martin Papazian) is a recently divorced vet who is on the brink of self-destruction until his ten-year-old neighbor, Wade (Tristan Lake Leabu), desperately needs Anthony to help him find his father. Both go on a journey of self-discovery while battling inner demons and are quietly helped along the way by the unsung heroes of the world – The Least Among Saints.

Small film. Big message. This fast-paced true-to-life movie is a must-see for anyone who likes rich thought-provoking stories of humanity. The performances are spot on and powerful. Keep your eye on Martin Papazian and young Tristan Lake Leabu. I gather this is not the last we'll be seeing of them.
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Powerful Film
duffsqfilm26 October 2012
It's rare that you see an authentic story about a veteran that rings true. Least Among Saints is a powerful emotionally movie story that takes you into the life of a veteran dealing with the trauma and aftermath of war.

The story is at times heartbreaking yet doesn't come off as phony or melodramatic. It's a story of redemption.

The acting is real, the directing is strong and the cinematography serves the story. I saw the movie in Santa Monica with a large group of veterans who were moved and loved the film.

I highly recommend you check it out. Marty Papazian did an excellent job as a triple hyphen writer-director-actor.
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Excellent, Well-written, Engaging
Zippy Tonguetwister14 May 2014
Loved this movie! The relationships have depth. The unwinding of the story is engaging from start to finish. Don't want to give a lot away, but it was compelling in my opinion, and well, well worth it. I thought the acting was very solid. Sometimes when you put "popular" stars in movies like this, it's just not believable. I think the cast was perfect for the characters, and helped make me believe.

No real downside for me. I'm know I could nitpick it apart, but for me movies are kinda pass or fail. The boy in the story is a character that is all too real in society today. It made me watch the case worker critically, and I think she did an excellent job unwinding her character as well.

Definitely strong language, so be aware of that.
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Important and Enjoyable
Stephanie Angelini26 October 2012
This is an honest and humble love story, really, framed in two important social/political issues that our world currently faces. First, how should we be dealing with returning Veterans from all over the world. How do we help them heal, as a society and as individuals. What works and what does not work within the "system" and how can we change that? Second, how are we handling children who suddenly find themselves in the system. Overworked social workers are limited in what they can do and how well they can do it. I know I said it's a love story, and it is. A love story with lovely moments. Oh and moments that make you squirm. And moments that are so terribly tragic yet some have undertones of humor. Some don't. Bring a handkerchief, but Martin Papazian, the director, handles them without being maudlin. And Martin Papazian, the actor, lights up the screen.
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