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Joseph Greco: The scene at 41:55 of the South Florida State Hospital as Chris sees it through a chain link fence is a cameo of sorts - the director is one of the "workers" walking past the building, "not because I wanted to, but because we had no one else and I needed someone in the background, walking, to liven up the shot." See more »
The boy is cut on the arm by his mom and the cut is in the middle of his arm between the elbow and wrist and it is a long red line. The next scene there is bandage on the middle of arm above the elbow. See more »
Don't Wait for DVD! Incredible Acting and the Real Joe Pantoliano
CANVAS should get at least a couple Academy Award nominations. Don't wait for it to come out in DVD.
Inspired by the true story of director Joe Greco's family) the film will touch audiences even more than A BEAUTIFUL MIND, because it's about an ordinary family confronting schizophrenia, rather than a Nobel Prize-winning mathematician. People identify with it--in part because it's not simply about mental illness. It is dramatic, heart-breaking, frightening at times, but also heart-warming, with moments of humor and a bottom-line message of hope. As a small, independent film, CANVAS probably is the LITTLE MISS SUNSHINE of 2007. Sailing, oil painting, and a light house provide key metaphors. Some angles of special interest:
Award winner Marcia Gay Harden plays Mary Marino, the mother, who becomes ill with schizophrenia. It's a difficult role for any actor to play. I want to hear her talk about it when she accepts her Oscar (it will be her second).
Emmy winner Joe Pantoliano delivers a powerful, sensitive performance that is a dramatic contrast to the tough guy, wise guy, bad guy roles he played in "The Sopranos" and movies like RISKY BUSINESS and the MATRIX. Play the role personally affected him--he told a NAMI audience this summer that he now realizes that his mother probably suffered from undiagnosed, untreated, mental illness that shaped his own turbulent childhood. He's a sweetheart in the movie, much like he is in real life (surprise).
10-year old Devon Gearhart plays the son, Chris Marino, whose coming of age comes early. Here's an interesting fact. When he was six, he appeared with Ray Charles, teaching him to play "Chopsticks," in a television commercial for the Georgia State Lottery (He's from Atlanta). He practically stole the show during the NAMI questions and answers.
If you come from a family in which there's a history of schizophrenia, take a few uninitiated friends to see it--or send them DVDs as gifts once they go on sale. CANVAS is the real deal, without stereotypes or gloom and doom. It's educational, but most of all, it's dramatic entertainment.
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