Saturday, August 16, 2014


Though this violates the "say it in under 2 hours or get a new editor" rule, it still keeps you in your seat and entertained for a full 2 hours and 45 minutes. You heard me. But since it uses the same actors over a 12 year period, if you get bored, you can simply spend some time looking for all the physical differences in the actors that occured over the 12 year span. Richard Linklater used the 6 year old Ellar Coltrane in the lead, and used him for 12 years.  He used Ethan Hawke and Patricia Arquette, too. The story is gentle. Despite some marital violence, some divorces and a little bullying here and there, there are no horrible moments or surprises. It's just the way the story goes with Ellar Coltrane in the lead. There are moments we all could identify with. And, there are moments were are grateful we never had. Unlike a lot of movies, I think this one will translate well to the on demand feature on your cable. You don't need to rush out and see it despite the glowing reviews. In fact, because of its length, it might best be viewed in 2 or even 3 sittings.  Sitting through the credits we saw the name of one of my daughter's former classmates as "band member #3".  Ethan Hawke does a great job as a father who had disappeared for a year but comes back to be in his children's lives. We hate him for being such a ne'er do well, but then we grow to like him because he truly loves his kids and tries. In many ways, though he is the one who seems least dependable, he is the one who is the refuge his kids can depend upon. Patricia Arquette plays a mother who has to be beaten to discover she has a huge problem with liking jackass alcoholics who try to be authoritarians with the kids. She lets them. Her peacemaking almost gets her killed. It takes her years to wise up. The kids in this are so likable. It leaves you with some thinking to do.