5.2/10
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18 user 10 critic

Iowa (2005)

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A cautionary tale of love, crime, fantasy and addiction that follows two young Iowan lovers who decide to go into the "batch" business - cooking their own methamphetamine - only to watch it burn a searing hole in their lives.

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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Irv Huffman
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Nick Slavens
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Joey Wilhoff (as Billy Wayne)
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Darrell McNeely
John Tracy ...
Leo Harte
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Sheriff Walker
Jack Orend ...
Mortician
John Bliss ...
Pastor Krause
James Serpento ...
Gesture Man
Stephen Whitney ...
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A cautionary tale of love, crime, fantasy and addiction that follows two young Iowan lovers who decide to go into the "batch" business - cooking their own methamphetamine - only to watch it burn a searing hole in their lives.

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They don't just grow corn here anymore.

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Crime | Drama

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22 April 2005 (USA)  »

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$2,000,000 (estimated)
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Quotes

Esper Harte: [pointing a gun at Larry] Drop your pants; I wanna see *your* penis.
Larry Clarkson: What?
Esper Harte: Drop your goddamn pants; I wanna see your penis!
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User Reviews

 
Low Rent Meth Madness
6 April 2006 | by See all my reviews

"Iowa" wants to be "Requiem for a Dream" for Midwest meth, but it comes across as a hard R rated "Reefer Madness".

Yes, drugs are bad, and meth is horribly pernicious, as an addiction and how it destroys people, families and communities. But these characters who are either dumb or ridiculous and the eye-rolling plot won't teach that lesson to anyone.

While writer/director/star Matt Farnsworth has some charisma on screen, his partner Diane Foster plays a wincibly silly wide-eyed innocent corrupted by drugsas was already satirized by Susan Sarandon in "The Rocky Horror Picture Show". I really felt sorry for her for all the totally unnecessary nudity she was put through. It wasn't until the end of the film that I realized I was supposed to think these two were recent high-school graduates to explain some of their naiveté, as we are bombarded by their school photos, but if so, they even looked older than the folks on "The O.C.". While they have good chemistry on screen, they are a pale imitation of a "Badlands"-type couple.

The guest stars are badly used. Michael T. Weiss, who was so good in TV's "The Pretender", is completely ludicrous as a corrupt parole officer and his brutal violence is just plain crazy, as his character pretty much ruins any social significance for the film. Rosanna Arquette has to be even sleazier than she rolled around for David Cronenberg as a very low rent Livia Soprano. John Savage even has to mouth the old baby boomer excuses about I did pot but this is worse. A Goth chick shows up, with the odd explanation that she's a stripper from Des Moines. The obligatory Latino drug dealer appears - in Iowa?

With a limited budget, the interior view of meth use is portrayed quite vividly, with quite scary hallucinations. We certainly see them go crazy.

While the Iowa locations are used very well (including an amusing scene of a propane gas robbery), the accents and church references are confusingly Southern Baptist. Guns seem to be used by law abiding and law breaking citizens here more than in any inner-city drug-dealing movie.

The songs of Iowa's best known bard Greg Brown are used throughout, but oddly are not listed in the credits. I hope they were used with permission.

I caught this at its commercial run in NYC because I missed it at the Tribeca Film Festival where it got considerable-- and inexplicable-- buzz.


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