8.0/10
18
2 user 4 critic

The Shade Shepherd (2019)

An adventure set in the late 80s, a psychiatrist leads his junkie older brother towards the Canadian border to escape a murder charge.

Director:

Chris Faulisi
Reviews
2 wins. See more awards »

Photos

Learn more

More Like This 

Horizon (2019)
Adventure | Drama | Sci-Fi
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.5/10 X  

Five friends attempt to flee when a mysterious alien ship arrives in the skies over their home city. However, it soon becomes clear that they may hold the key to stopping an invasion.

Directors: Paul Dudbridge, Simon Pearce
Stars: Paul Tonkin, Kate Davies-Speak, Alicia Ancel
Sand Castles (2014)
Crime | Drama | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

In rural Indiana, Noah and his impoverished family wrestle with the mysterious return of his now mute sister Lauren, who was kidnapped and held captive for over a decade.

Director: Clenet Verdi-Rose
Stars: Jordon Hodges, Anne Winters, Randy Spence
Documentary | Adventure
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.5/10 X  

Erik is totally blind and is solo kayaking the length of the Grand Canyon. In Lava Falls, a large dangerous rapid, he discovers that despite what people might say, barriers can be real and they hurt .. a lot.

Director: Michael Brown
Stars: Lonnie Bedwell, Steven Mace, Timmy O'Neill
Action | Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

An American bar room pianist and his prostitute girlfriend go on a trip through the Mexican underworld to collect a bounty on the head of a dead gigolo.

Director: Sam Peckinpah
Stars: Warren Oates, Isela Vega, Robert Webber
The Mountain (2012)
Adventure | Drama | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.9/10 X  

The heroic story of two soldiers trapped in an ambush, fighting for their lives.

Director: Alper Caglar
Stars: Caglar Ertugrul, Ufuk Bayraktar, Firat Dogruloglu
Danny Collins (2015)
Biography | Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

An aging rock star decides to change his life when he discovers a 40-year-old letter written to him by John Lennon.

Director: Dan Fogelman
Stars: Al Pacino, Annette Bening, Jennifer Garner
Sunset (2018)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  

A young girl grows up to become a strong and fearless woman in Budapest before World War I.

Director: László Nemes
Stars: Susanne Wuest, Vlad Ivanov, Björn Freiberg
Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Jordon Hodges ... Jack Ables
Randy Spence ... Pike Ables
Caroline Newton ... Stacey Ables
Brett Baker ... Styx
Jency Griffin Hogan ... Sammy
Jeff Sowell ... Joe
Carrie Lee Bland ... Jenny
Ed Ernstes ... Cowboy
Stacey Nickel Stacey Nickel ... Susan Aaron
Jennifer Pompa ... Judy
Jim Dougherty ... Farmer Dale
Gregory Melton Gregory Melton ... State Trooper
Anne Sheridan Smith Anne Sheridan Smith ... Doctor
Jonathan Helmuth ... Mr. Ables
Tevis R. Marcum ... Will
Edit

Storyline

An adventure set in the late 80s, a psychiatrist leads his junkie older brother towards the Canadian border to escape a murder charge.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Edit

Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

28 April 2019 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Blue Marlin See more »

Filming Locations:

Shipshewana, Indiana, USA See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

Chris Faulisi's The Shade Shepherd is The Best Film of 2019
10 June 2019 | by Frosty_CriticSee all my reviews

Vents Magazine -- Ryan Vandergriff

What if you had the opportunity to sit and speak with a loved one long gone? What would you say? Would there be anger and hostility for past transgressions or would there be absolute love and forgiveness for who they were at one point in your life and what they meant to you during the best of times?

There is a breathtaking moment in director Chris Faulisi's new movie The Shade Shepherd (written by Faulisi and actor Jordon Hodges) where this very dilemma is cleverly addressed by ne'er-do-well Pike Ables when, a full hour into the proceedings, he wanders through his old childhood home and stumbles across the ghost of his father who vanished years earlier sitting contemplatively on the front porch reading a newspaper and smoking a cigarette. When he sees the man who he's made into the veritably worst parent ever, Pike realizes he isn't quite that at all; conversely, he's not the best one either. He simply is: no more and no less, much like Pike himself with all of his own past mistakes and regrets. It's a father and son "reunion" that will break your heart and heal it all at once and it is a true pivot for a character expertly played with subtle anguish and nuance by the actor called on to exorcise Pike Ables, journeyman actor Randy Spence.

The Shade Shepherd might just be the best movie you'll see in 2019 that doesn't feature a comic book superhero or a demonic possessed doll. It in fact features the deceptively simplest of plots: It's 1987 and Jack, a well-meaning and loving psychiatrist (Jordon Hodges, also the co-writer of this film), attempts to help his drug addled older brother escape into Canada following a murder charge slapped against him after a bar fight that turns deadly.

Making this choice to leave everything behind in order to help his brother does not understandably sit well with Jack's wife who we find quite pregnant as the story begins to unfold. Caroline Newton as Jack's ever-suffering wife, Stacey, has what could potentially be a difficult role if left in the hands of a less capable actress. Newton makes you believe her confusion and loneliness though, and shines brightly with a level of empathy that is pronounced and compelling. The story doesn't waste too much time in getting the two brothers on the lam from law enforcement and establishing what is essentially a road movie with no real road; most of the trek to Canada and freedom is done through dense woods with nothing but an old map and a compass to guide them. A parallel trek is happening too, this one in the wounded psyche of two brothers who have forgotten how to talk with one another but not how to love. Complicating things is the fact that Pike is a drug addict going through a painful detox the further he goes into the woods. Bing Crosby and Bob Hope never had these sorts of problems in any of their Road films.

Jordon Hodges as Jack paints a strangely neutral and muted performance that seems on first viewing oddly one-note. I will not go into much detail in this review about that other than to say this: Hang in there. Not everything is as it may seem and Hodges pulls off a bit of acting that is one of the more accomplished of recent memory. As an actor and a writer he poses a double threat and he truly is a talent to keep an eye on.

Every Jack needs a Pike and Randy Spence is more than up to the task of adding layer after layer onto what has every right to be a stock character. Luckily, the writing of Faulisi and Hodges along with the chops of Spence will not allow for cliché and what we're left with is one of the better performances by an actor in recent memory, at various points channeling levels only commonly achieved by such actors as Montgomery Clift and Christian Bale. Make no mistake this is a performance of raw power, humor and utmost pathos. If there is a Cinematic God and Justice, Randy Spence is a name you are going to be hearing a lot more of in the very near future.

The character actors of the piece are also noteworthy and there is not one single false note among a one of them. Particular attention should be given to Hollywood veteran actor Brett Baker, who has a wicked and fun turn as the boatman who might just provide Jack and Pike with salvation through exodus. Not for nothing is his character known as Styx (go ahead, Google it, I'll wait...). Director Chris Faulisi has delivered an outstanding piece of film that deserves recognition and with every frame you can see his heart and creativity shining through. As duly noted earlier, Faulisi co-wrote The Shade Shepherd which is impressive enough. One upping all of that (and making all of us look like utter pikers), he also provided the rich and lush cinematography of the movie that is a character in and of itself.

In recent days since viewing a screener of the film I've been excited about yet another character in the film, one I'm reluctant to extrapolate on for fear of giving too much away. This unheralded character goes by a variety of names, but for the sake of brevity let's just call him Misdirect. This is a film that goes off into some very unexpected directions, yet the bottom holds the structure of the film up upon further viewings. The Shade Shepherd is a callback to movies that demand second and third screenings. Not because it is at all confusing, but simply because it all makes so much sense. In an era where we like our movies telegraphed from miles away, this feels like a welcome return to such filmatic masterpieces as The Usual Suspects and Memento. Don't believe me? Well, I guess you'll have to just check this film out ASAP. Then let's talk.

The Shade Shepherd is quite simply the best movie of 2019.


1 of 1 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 2 user reviews »

Contribute to This Page

Stream Action and Adventure Titles With Prime Video

Explore popular action and adventure titles available to stream with Prime Video.

Start your free trial



Recently Viewed