JunebugDirector: Phil Morrison, Phil Morrison, Amy Adams, Embeth Davidtz
Phil Morrison, who collaborated with screenwriter Angus MacLachlan for his acclaimed 1990 short, Tater Tomater, joins forces with MacLachlan again for his feature-film debut, Junebug. Junebug takes place in rural North Carolina. Madeleine (Embeth Davidtz), a sophisticated Chicagoan who owns a gallery devoted to "outsider art," goes south in an effort to woo an eccentric painter (Frank Hoyt Taylor) to her gallery. She brings along her husband, George (Alessandro Nivola), a native of the area, and the couple stays with his family. Peg (Celia Weston), George's mother, gives Madeleine a rather chilly greeting, and seems to think she's a poor match for her eldest son, while his father, Eugene (Scott Wilson), is a bit more welcoming, in his quiet way. George's younger brother, Johnny (Ben McKenzie), is still living at home with his very pregnant wife, Ashley (Amy Adams), and seems to feel nothing but resentment for George. For her part, Ashley is a gregarious young woman, and she's immediately smitten with her "new sister." Junebug was selected by the Museum of Modern Art and the Film Society of Lincoln Center for inclusion in the 2005 edition of New Directors/New Films.
Junebug is a great film because it is a true film. It humbles other films that claim to be about family secrets and eccentricities. It understands that families are complicated and their problems are not solved during a short visit, just in time for the film to end. Families and their problems go on and on, and they aren't solved, they're dealt with.
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Cast & Crew
|Frank Hoyt Taylor||David Wark|
|Jill Wagner||Shower Guest|
|Jeffree Bloomer||Sound/Sound Designer|
|Mark P. Clein||Executive Producer|
|David Doernberg||Production Designer|
|Danielle Kays||Costumes/Costume Designer|
|Ethan D. Leder||Executive Producer|
|Daniel Rappaport||Executive Producer|
|Mike S. Ryan||Producer|
|Dany Wolf||Executive Producer|
|Yo La Tengo||Score Composer|
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Junebug tells the story of a newly married couple (they got married one week after they met, who six months after their wedding go down to North Carolina, for business purposes, and drop a visit to the husband`s family, whom the wife (who comes from a very elite background) had never met before. The film is set at a rather slow pace, supposedly introducing the peace and slower pace of life in a small town. At times, I did think it was a bit too slow. The characters are interesting, and the whole story seemed very real to me, so real in fact that you feel bad for the characters when they find themselves in an awkward situation. I loved the character of the sister-in-law, Ashley, magnificentl played by Amy Adams - I think she was the one who lifted this movie above the average. The love story between the husband and wife did not seem too convincing for me, and I came away feeling bad and not too hopeful for them, but that might be just me. I thin it is a fairly well done movie, but not one that I would necessarily rewatch.
I rented this movie because Roger Ebert keep on bragging how good it was. After watching it, I really think he's insane! This movie is so slow! Amy Adams' character is great, besides that it has no entertainment value. "Junebug" is so slow and depressing it's made the sucide rate go up in some states. Please if you want to live your life to its fullest do not watch this move.
I am sorry I rented this junk. It seemed to go on forever. It's depressing and annoying, especially the brother character. I just wanted to slap him. Don't waste your time or money.
Everyone's been invited to a weekend at a friends house or spent a couple day's outside their own "world" I would think. This movie seems to attempt to capture that strange realm when you're at the mercy of the people and lives around you. It does this primarily through the eye's of a newly married, well traveled, socially confident and successful woman traveling 1000 miles south for work and also to meet her new husbands Methodist family. The film is sometimes quirky, sometimes stark, and very naked in painting and seemingly portraying uneven and unfamiliar worlds. The scenes often have a very bare and vulnerable feel to them. The acting is great and the filmmaker involves the viewer intimately in every shot. This is a "day in the life of" kind of film which I am usually a sucker for so I found it engaging. Each person you meet is different and interesting. You don't really know where the story is going but you don't care because each scene commands your attention. Many scenes seem explicit in their nature with the indiscriminate snippets of the characters presented to us sitting alone, having sex, going to church, or buttering toast. One person reviewing this film said this film could be summed up best using a couple lines from it's script in which the new couple meet for the first time in an art gallery. female lead: "So, you like this one?"... Male: "Yeah, it makes me happy... but I'm going to buy the UFO." Whether or not you like the film will depend on your own interpretation and the overall theme or category this film should be in is unidentifiable. The fact that a script like this can still find funding, get made and find an audience (no matter how small) is very encouraging.
The setting in this film is easily the star of the movie. Any person from the country can relate and can almost smell the wood paneling. Amy Adams' character is so full of depth and character you are amazed in how sorry you feel for her, so much so that you just want to give her a giant hug. In an Oscar list of excellent actors she easily outshines them with this character. Although the movie is well put together the random cut-scenes of nothing seem awkward. The whole movie seems to move slow but is rewarding in the end.
A dysfunctional family in which nobody grows or changes and everyone puts up with each other stupidity. I fell asleep.
As someone who grew up in a small town and then moved to a big city, I found this movie both very well made and at the same time almost intolerably unnerving. The direction and writing really captures with clear precision the setting and characters. This film is almost a documentary of life in a small rural town with its uneasy awkwardness and tense unhappiness that seems to underly everything. Each member of the family is almost like a mirror to members of my family or people I knew in my small town. The use of silence and long still shots of empty rooms helped flush out the mood of small town life. This is definitely a character piece, but the plot was kept at a good pace and Amy Adams' portrayal of Ashley was magnificent. Lots of visual metaphors and subtle reinforcements of the larger emotions throughout. For example, the story arc of Madeleine and Wark was such an interesting counter arc to Madeleine's initiation into the Johnsten family. A smaller, but nice touch, was the painting of Madeleine's nails, which stayed red until they were back on the highway and leaving it all behind. As I said, this film made me crawl in my skin it was so realistic, but it was an excellent watch.