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Dear Eleanor
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Dear Eleanor More at IMDbPro »

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1 out of 2 people found the following review useful:

Whimsical Tale

7/10
Author: Larry Silverstein from United States
28 July 2016

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

I would say perhaps the best way to enjoy this movie is not to take it seriously but regard it as a whimsical and humorous fantasy, and to just go with the flow of it all.

Initially set, in 1962, in Manteca, California, 15-year-old Ellie Potter (Llana Liberato), has just lost her mother in a car accident as she was heading to introduce the former First Lady Eleanor Roosevelt, and champion of human rights, at a local function. Ellie blames herself, as she refused to pick up her brother at school that day causing her mother to change course when the accident occurred.

Ellie is quite depressed as a result, as is her father Bob (Luke Wilson) However, Ellie's best friend Max (Isabelle Fuhrman) prepares and sends a letter to Mrs. Roosevelt asking for a signed photo, or even a meeting, in an attempt to raise Ellie's spirit. Max, though, is unaware that her friend Billy (Joel Courtney) has sent them a phony reply from the former First Lady saying she would be open to visiting with them in her home in upstate New York.

Thus, Ellie and Max will set off on a cross country road trip, hoping to eventually meet Mrs. Roosevelt. They'll be plenty of adventures along the way and, as mentioned, it's probably best not to take them all too seriously, but I felt the film became more enjoyable as it progressed.

Note: Just to mention there are a ton of over-the-top smoking scenes in the movie, but in those days smoking in public was extremely prevalent, even encouraged by advertisers etc.

Overall, I thought this film directed by Kevin Connolly, and co-written by Cecelia Contreras and Amy Garcia, contained quite solid acting from those already mentioned, plus Josh Lucas and Jessica Alba enhanced the movie, while even Patrick Schwarzenegger (yes-the son of Arnold) gets a small beefcake role here. To me, this film became more enjoyable as it progressed, eventually leading up to its quite poignant ending.

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0 out of 1 people found the following review useful:

Modest "Road" Picture is Fun & Light-Hearted

8/10
Author: lavatch from Twin Cities, Minnesota
16 September 2016

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

The strength of "Dear Eleanor" was in the scripting that included clever dialogue and situations filled with nostalgia of the early 1960s. From start to finish, the scenes were lively as two teenagers take to the road for a cross-country trip from California to New York to visit Eleanor Roosevelt in 1962.

The film starts in the breadbasket of California in Manteca. A young girl's mother dies tragically in an auto accident just before she could deliver a short speech introducing Eleanor Roosevelt. To honor her mother, the main character enlists her best friend to make the trip to New York. Along the way, there is a series of improbable events. While most of the scenes are silly, there is nonetheless good humor and charm throughout the film.

Part of the charm of the film derives from the screenwriters' references to movies and culture of the early 1960s. While serious events are introduced, such as the Cuban Missile Crisis, the writers keep the mood light, constantly interjecting humor and silliness. The most absurd situation was a traveling companion picked up by the girls, who is an escaped convict, who bails them out of difficulty when they are arrested. Later, the convict inexplicably drops out of the plot by boarding a single-engine airplane and flying off into the sunset. Without a doubt, the scenes with convict are the funniest in the film, especially the banter that implies that the man might be one of the felons from Alcatraz, who made a daring prison break at this time.

While the character of Eleanor Roosevelt was not developed in much depth, she was still given a fine tribute for her many humanitarian achievements, not the least of which was delivering her own speech about civil rights in the face of threats from the KKK. This was a thoughtful film with both humorous and touching moments from writers with excellent potential.

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0 out of 2 people found the following review useful:

Enjoyable movie filmed in my home area.

8/10
Author: csimpkins53 from United States
9 August 2016

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

I might not have seen this movie except that I know that it was filmed in and around the area in which I live. It would have been a shame had I not seen it because I would have missed seeing a good road trip film! "Dear Eleanor" is about two girls on a cross country road trip from California to the east coast on a quest to meet Eleanor Roosevelt. However, other than a scene or two shot in Utah the movie was filmed almost entirely in and around my hometown of Longmont, Colorado (Population 90,000 plus and 35 miles north of Denver). For example, the scene that is supposed to be a Police station in Kentucky is actually an old library building in Longmont. A scene that shows the Chrysler going past Janie's Café is also in the older part of Longmont. There were numerous other scenes shot in Longmont including a farmhouse just outside of town and some of the interior shots in the film as well. Eleanor Roosevelt's house on the east coast is actually a house in old town Longmont. The scene where Bob Potter's truck breaks down and Billy Hobgood gives him a ride in his motorcycle's side car was shot just outside of Longmont. The town of Manteca Ca. in the film is actually the small town of Niwot, Co (about five miles from Longmont). The scene at the "Country Corner Store" and gas station is actually an abandoned store in the small town of Hygiene about a mile from the western edge of Longmont. The interior of what is supposed to be the Paramount theater in New York is actually a theater in Denver. It's too bad this film did not get a proper theatrical run. It was shot in 2:39:1 aspect ratio which would have been perfect for theater release. I do recommend this movie for at least a rental or good addition to any collection.

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1 out of 4 people found the following review useful:

Like a Hallmark story - only better

8/10
Author: zif ofoz from United States
3 August 2016

A very nice and simple 'road movie' of two early teen girls driving from California to New York state to meet Eleanor Roosevelt. One girl is making the trip to appease her guilt feelings and the other is a best friend going along in support of the others mission.

Along the road a spectrum of odd characters are met and two have reason to join the girls in their cross country adventure. I do not want to give any details about the story as it is the story that gives this film it's charm. Anyone who enjoys road movies and wants a clear simple and nice story then this flick is the right choice. It's not great acting nor is the script first class writing but as a whole it works well and is entertaining!

Does it have a happy ending - no - and - yes! Watch this film to find out why.

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