A traumatized veteran, unafraid of violence, tracks down missing girls for a living. When a job spins out of control, Joe's nightmares overtake him as a conspiracy is uncovered leading to what may be his death trip or his awakening.
Kevin's mother struggles to love her strange child, despite the increasingly dangerous things he says and does as he grows up. But Kevin is just getting started, and his final act will be beyond anything anyone imagined.
On the rocky path to sobriety after a life-changing accident, John Callahan discovers the healing power of art, willing his injured hands into drawing hilarious, often controversial cartoons, which bring him a new lease on life.
Set over one summer, the film follows precocious six-year-old Moonee as she courts mischief and adventure with her ragtag playmates and bonds with her rebellious but caring mother, all while living in the shadows of Walt Disney World.
Balancing between feverish dreamlike hallucinations of a tormented past and a grim disoriented reality, the grizzled Joe--a traumatised Gulf War veteran and now an unflinching hired gun who lives with his frail elderly mother--has just finished yet another successful job. With an infernal reputation of being a brutal man of results, the specialised in recovering missing teens enforcer will embark on a blood-drenched rescue mission, when Nina, the innocent 13-year-old daughter of an ambitious New York senator, never returns home. But amidst half-baked leads and a desperate desire to shake off his shoulders the heavy burden of a personal hell, Joe's frenzied plummet into the depths of Tartarus is inevitable, and every step Joe takes to flee the pain, brings him closer to the horrors of insanity. In the end, what is real, and what is a dream? Can there be a new chapter in Joe's life when he keeps running around in circles?Written by
If I Knew You Were Comin' (I'd Have Baked a Cake)
Words and Music by Al Hoffman, Bob Merrill and Al Trace (as Clem Watts)
Performed by Eileen Barton and The New Yorkers
Published by Chester Music Ltd trading as Campbell Connelly & Co/Colgems-EMI Music Inc. John Massa
Courtesy of Island Def Jam Music Group
Under licence from Universal Music Operations Ltd See more »
I'm still processing this. The comparisons to "Taxi Driver" are fair: the performances, the director's vision and exectution, the understated script..... those are some of the similarities. The major differences, for me include the depth to which the protagonist's trauma is not played out for us to view as observers, but drip-fed in increasing doses, often from a first-person perspective, which in my watching felt more like we were experiencing Joe's trauma with him, rather than seeing it played out for us. The film also has a lot of relevance to current discussions of modern masculinity, and here the gendering of social roles is presented very much more as a question than a statement.
If you prefer to finish watching a film with your friends and be able to agree pretty much without discussion on what it was about, then I suspect you might find this film pretentious or light on plot. If you're the type who enjoys discovering what your friends think they just saw, and don't mind spending a lot the movie time watching Joaquin Phoenix' face doing some really admirable acting, then this film might be as worthwhile for you as it was for me.
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