Successful Carolinian George Johnsten meets Chicago art gallery owner Madeleine at an electoral benefit art auction- love at first sight. Madeleine decides to meet a Southern original artist, so George seizes the opportunity to come along and present her to his North Carolina parents Eugene and Peg, drop-out brother Johny and his high-pregnant wife Ashley. Confronting the outsider soon opens a can of worms as emotions revive or emerge, like admiration and jealousy.Written by
Alessandro Nivola missed the reference to his character singing a hymn when he read the script, and was unaware that he had to do so until a few days before his "singing scene" was scheduled to shoot. He only had a few days to rehearse, and his singing in the scene is recorded live, as the budget did not allow for it to be recorded on a sound stage. See more »
In the hospital room, Ashley's hair repeatedly moves from being behind/not behind her ear between shots. See more »
I don't want your water breaking. We just had the upholstery cleaned.
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Greetings again from the darkness. Director Phil Morrison and Writer Angus MacLachlan collaborated on "Tater Tomater", which was featured at 1990's Sundance Festival. Together again, they have created a nice home-spun tapestry of family relationships. Despite its seemingly bizarre group of characters, we find ourselves easily relating to the difficulties in understanding and communicating with those in our family - those who should be most like us.
The filmmakers have assembled a cast of mostly veteran actors, but no Hollywood "stars". The most recognizable is Benjamin McKenzie ("The O.C.") who plays the simmering quiet little brother whose wife, played brilliantly by Amy Adams, is with child. Others include Embeth Davidtz as the wife of prodigal son George (Alessandro Nivola, who played Pollux Troy in the underrated "Face/Off"); an electric Frank Hoyt Taylor as the off-center civil war artist David Wark; and veterans Celia Weston and Scott Wilson as the parents of the feuding boys. As a point of interest look for Saturday Night Live alum Victoria Jackson as one of the nurses.
Although the film's heart and soul is the theme of family and the stress it creates, while somehow producing the draw that cannot be ignored, it also does a really wonderful job of capturing the spirit of southern small time living. At the center of all of this is Amy Adams, who literally steals the film as the eternally optimistic and determined "firecracker" Ashley. Her performance is outstanding, multi-layered, thought-provoking and genuine. Kind of doubt that this film will receive the necessary attention to have her nominated for an Academy Award, but she deserves one.
This is a necessarily slow-moving film that can be uncomfortable to watch, while at the same time causing you to smile, laugh and even tear up.
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