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Posts Tagged ‘Patricia Arquette’

Patricia Arquette, Angela Bassett, Felicity Huffman

“OTHERHOOD” My rating: C+ (Available on Netflix)

100 minutes | MPAA rating: R

Thank God for Patricia Arquette, Angela Bassett and Felicity Huffman.

These three classy thesps  make “Otherhood” bearable and intermittently entertaining.

The premise of Cindy Chupack’s film finds three old friends in upstate New York lamenting the indifference with which  their sons ignore Mother’s Day.

Thus the film’s title: once mothers, these three women now find themselves “others.”

But the gals aren’t gonna take it.  They load up an orange Volvo station wagon and tool down to NYC to surprise their errant offspring.

Carol (Bassett) discovers that her son Matt (Sinqua Walls) is the art director of a “lad” magazine (aimed at horny single guys) with a different girl every night.

Gillian (Arquette) finds her son Daniel (Jake Hoffman) struggling not only with a stillborn writing career but a breakup with his longtime girlfriend (Heidi Gardner).

Helen (Huffman) swoops down on the gay-centric apartment of her kid Paul (Jake Lacy) and throws a few hissy fits that alternately amuse and appall Paul’s roomies.

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Ellar Coltrane...growing up before our eyes

Ellar Coltrane…growing up before our eyes

“BOYHOOD”  My rating: A (Opening Aug. 1 at the Tivoli, Rio, Glenwood Arts and AMC Town Center)

165 minutes | MPAA rating: R

True originality is rare in the cinema, perhaps the most self-referential and cannibalistic of all the art forms.

But with “Boyhood” Texas auteur Richard Linklater has given us something so fresh and new it boggles the mind.

The gimmick is that Linklater filmed the picture over 12 years, each year shooting a few new scenes featuring the same actors.

His central character, Mason,  is portrayed from age 6 to 18 by Ellar Coltrane, who is as natural in his scenes as a college freshman as he was as a first grader when the movie began almost three hours earlier.

It isn’t just Mason who grows up before our eyes.  Everyone in the cast undergoes the transformation dictated by the passage of time — Lorelei Linklater (the filmmaker’s daughter), who plays Mason’s sassy older sister Samantha, and Ethan Hawke and Patricia Arquette, who portray their divorced parents. (Hawke, of course, is with Julie Delpy the star of Linklater’s “Before…” series, which to date has produced three movies examining a romantic relationship over two decades.)

Early in this review I called “Boyhood’s” setup a gimmick. Well, if this is a gimmick it is a singularly profound gimmick, one that packs an overwhelming emotional punch. By using the same actors at various stages in their lives Linklater is able to meld the specific with the universal in a way I’ve never before experienced in a fiction film.

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