A clinically-depressed teenager gets a new start after he checks himself into an adult psychiatric ward.A clinically-depressed teenager gets a new start after he checks himself into an adult psychiatric ward.A clinically-depressed teenager gets a new start after he checks himself into an adult psychiatric ward.
Kind of nice that Hollywood can still offer a non-commercial, very moving film like this one
Craig (Keir Gilchrist) is depressed. Although his parents (Lauren Graham and Jim Gaffigan) are nice, they are a mildly over-achieving duo who try to gently push their teenage son in a certain direction. This means going to a competitive high school and following a specific curriculum. But, even though Craig is quite intelligent, his stress level is very high and he dreams of "jumping off a bridge". One morning, before sunrise, he sneaks out of the house to contemplate his own suicide but ends up going to a hospital emergency room. The teen insists they admit him. They do. However, the adolescent ward is undergoing renovations and doesn't have room for Craig. Instead, he is placed in the adult psych ward, with a nearly catatonic roommate, Muqtada (Bernard White). In short order, Craig wants to go home but his new shrink, Dr. Eden (Viola Davis) says that is impossible, he must remain for five days. Fortunately, he soon makes friends with an affable patient named Bobby (Zach Galifianakis) and casts his eye on a lovely young female Noelle (Emma Roberts), who bears telltale scars on her wrists. These three strike up a friendship, with Bobby schooling Craig on how to "dress up like an employee" and leave the ward, at least temporarily! It is quickly evident, however, that Bobby has some dark secrets, as does Noelle, and Muqtada seems to be going nowhere fast. Can Craig get the help he needs, even as he helps others? This is a lovely film which highlights the topic of mental illness in a sensitive, intelligent way. Yes, there are patients with more severe troubles than others but all remain part of the human race, as shown here. The cast is great, with Gilchrist doing a fantastic job as the film's main character. Galifianakis, Roberts, Davis, and especially White, do great work too, as do all of the lesser actors. The setting is fairly limited, as most of the action takes place in the hospital, and the costumes are suitably drab, although Roberts looks very pretty in whatever she wears. Then, too, the script is comically insightful while the direction and camera work are quite nice. All in all, if you are hoping to watch a great film that touches the heart, with depth, view this one kind of soon.
- Nov 9, 2010
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