Archive for the ‘John Hawkes’ Category

MOVIE: Winter’s Bone (2010)

December 9, 2010

Earlier this year, when this film was in local theaters, I kept meaning to go see it and then putting it off until, finally, I had missed its entire run.  Still intrigued by the story, I picked up a copy of the novel it was based on, by Daniel Woodrell, and then . . . never got around to reading it.  Hmmm.

The problem?  I think it was that I knew this was going to be a grim story — it’s about meth addicts in the rural Ozarks, after all — and I wasn’t sure it was also going to be a story great enough to warrant the bummer.

But man, was I ever wrong to doubt, because though this movie is definitely a serious downer, it’s also absolutely brilliant.

The plot focuses on a 17 year-old girl named Ree Dolly who lives in a very poor community in the mountains.  Ree’s been the primary “adult” of her household for years, taking care of her little brother and sister while her mother sits nearby, incapacitated by severe depression, and her father, Jessup, moves in and out of jails and meth labs, an addict and cooker who hasn’t really been a part of the family for years.

When a cop comes by the house one afternoon, Ree braces herself for the latest in bad news, knowing it’s probably got something to do with her dad.  She figured he’d been arrested again, but is stunned to hear that ain’t the half of it.  Not only has Jessup been arrested, the trooper tells her, but he put the Dolly house up as collateral for his bail — and hasn’t been heard from since.  The cop tells Ree if he doesn’t turn himself in within the week, she and her family will lose their home.  Ree pauses for a moment, letting the weight of the news sink her down, then quickly straightens up and declares with confidence, “I’ll find him.”

She immediately sets out to do just that, something that takes her into pretty dangerous territory.  Jessup’s circle of acquaintances, mostly all related to each other and the Dollys in one way or another, are also all criminals and meth heads, and none too keen on little girls asking nosy questions.

Ree’s uncle, Jessup’s brother Teardrop (powerfully played by ex-Boyfriend John Hawkes), tries to scare Ree into digging no deeper, leading her to suspect her father’s been the victim of foul play.  But when she continues to pursue the truth and is beaten severely for it, Teardrop finally takes a stand against the family himself — at great risk to his own life.

This story is heartbreaking on so many levels, not just because of the awful havoc wreaked by the combination of meth and poverty, but because of the incredible courage of this teenage girl who carries more weight of responsibility than I do, and does it with twice my strength and grace.  There wasn’t a single moment during this film when I doubted Ree could and would save her family, even as she was being kicked in the ribs repeatedly or forced to pull a corpse out of icy water with her bare hands.

New actress Jennifer Lawrence is stunningly talented (not to mention just plain stunning), and I can’t wait to see what she does next.  She brings Ree Dolly to life with a vibrancy I haven’t seen from a new actor in a really long time.

Beautifully shot, brilliantly acted, and brazenly authentic, this movie is absolute aces.  Do not miss!

[Netflix it | Buy it from Amazon]

Genre: Drama
Cast:  Jennifer Lawrence, John Hawkes, Dale Dickey, Garret Dillahunt, Lauren Sweetser, Isaiah Stone, Ashlee Thompson

Five More ex-Boyfriends Headed for TV!

August 27, 2009

Okay, so we already knew about Paul Gross in Eastwick (ABC, Wednesday, Sept. 23), Tim DeKay in White Collar (USA, Oct.), Alex O’Loughlin in Three Rivers (CBS, Sunday, Oct. 4), Chris O’Donnell on NCIS:LA (CBS, Tuesday, Sept. 22), and Timothy Olyphant on Lawman (FX, 2010) (okay, okay, he’s not an ex-Boyfriend YET, but he will be soon enough).

BUT I just found out today that five more ex-Boyfriends will be starring or co-starring in shows coming to cable and network television this fall/winter.  Man, I might have to quit my day job just to keep the DVR from exploding.  Life is good.  (p.s. Know of any other new shows coming soon that star old Boyfriends of the Week?  Hit the comments!)

We’ve got:

James Marsters playing terrorist leader Barnabus Greeley in SyFy’s Battlestar Galactica prequel series, Caprica. (Jan. 2010)

John Hawkes playing a new character on ABC’s Lost — some kind of businessman described as “scruffy, edgy, and charismatic.”  You had me at “scruffy,” ABC. (Jan. 2010)

Chris Noth co-starring with Julianna Margulies in CBS’s The Good Wife, a series about a stay-home mom who finds herself reentering the workplace after her husband’s very public sex and political corruption scandals land him in jail.  Sounds terrible.  Sign me up.  (Tuesday, Sept. 22)

The delightfully-voiced Clancy Brown co-starring in ABC’s new lawyer drama, The Deep End, which will focus on a law firm and its fresh-faced recruits.  While I’m definitely sick (and tired) of lawyer shows, those are two adjectives I’ll likely never apply to my feelings about The Clance (which sounds like an STD but isn’t; if it were, I’d be happy to contract it, though), so clearly I’m on board. Plus, Tina Majorino!  Yay!  (TBA, Fall)

And last, but certainly NOT least,

James Tupper, humina humina, coming to NBC in Mercy, a medical drama told from the perspective of nurses and described as having “a totally unique point of view.”  You know, except for all those other shows on TV right now about nurses.  Oh really, like we care if this one’s unique.  As long as nobody tries to tidy up his hair, I’m in.  (Friday, Sept. 23)

(By the way, I was going to reduce this photo of JT a bit.  But then I decided life’s too short for cropped photos of James Tupper.  You’re welcome.)