Sunday, May 18, 2008

Celluloid Heroes-"The Savages"

Every once in a while a movie comes along that stays with you long after the closing credits roll. For me today that film is the amazing "The Savages". The plot is simple; brother and sister find themselves having to deal with their estranged, elderly father who begins suffering from dementia. Add to it the emotional baggage the siblings constantly carry around and you have an emotional powder keg of a film. Sound fun? It isn't. But what is fun is watching the amazing Laura Linney and Phillip Seymour-Hoffman work together. This film is an acting tour de force, and one is left with no doubt that these two are the finest actors working today.

As bleak as the plot sounds, the movie never feels overwrought thanks to the wry wit and brilliant script by writer/director Tamara Jenkins. Leaving all typical Hollywood cliche behind, this film let's its character's fumble through their darkness without knowing if there is light at the end or where it might come from. The result is a rare beauty of a film that I will never forget. With all the crap Hollywood is throwing at us this season, "The Savages" feels like something resembling a miracle.

No comments: