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Lucky Ones

The Lucky Ones

5.0 2
Director: Neil Burger

Cast: Rachel McAdams, Tim Robbins, Michael Peña

Director Neil Burger's road movie The Lucky Ones stars Tim Robbins, Rachel McAdams, and Michael Peña as three Iraq War veterans who take a road trip together. The trio meet on their way home from overseas with Fred Cheaver (Robbins) finishing his service once and for all, while the other two -- Colee Dunn (McAdams) and TK Poole


Director Neil Burger's road movie The Lucky Ones stars Tim Robbins, Rachel McAdams, and Michael Peña as three Iraq War veterans who take a road trip together. The trio meet on their way home from overseas with Fred Cheaver (Robbins) finishing his service once and for all, while the other two -- Colee Dunn (McAdams) and TK Poole (Peña) -- are about to enjoy 30 days of R and R. A blackout leads to the three renting a car together after their flight is indefinitely delayed, and driving from New York to Cheaver's home in St. Louis. Upon arrival, Cheaver learns that his wife wants a divorce, and his son needs 20,000 dollars in order to attend Stanford. Emotionally shaken, Cheaver tries to drop the other two off at the airport, but they refuse to go until they can help him through his troubles. The two of them, however, are going through their own issues. Poole suffered an injury while on duty that he worries will end his relationship with his girlfriend, and Dunn is trying to deliver a guitar to the parents of her deceased boyfriend, a fellow soldier who died overseas.

Editorial Reviews

All Movie Guide - Perry Seibert
Some films are like giant murals -- vast canvases full of life's greatest tragedies and triumphs. The Lucky Ones is the opposite of that, a finely observed, gentle work where the slightest shifts in behavior indicate the characters' complex inner lives. The movie opens with TK Poole (Michael Peña) on patrol in Iraq, bragging about his bedroom skills. An explosion injures him, and soon he is sent home for 30 days. On the flight back, he meets two other soldiers also headed home: guitar-toting Colee Dunn (Rachel McAdams), a 19-year-old also on 30-day leave; and Fred Cheaver (Tim Robbins) a middle-aged man on his way home after finishing his service once and for all. Thanks to a blackout, and some unexpected domestic troubles, the three end up traveling across the U.S.A. together for a while. The premise of The Lucky Ones is certainly familiar, and it is the kind of subtle, talky movie that lives or dies on the skill of the performers, who, in this instance, are pitch-perfect. Michael Peña is a little-known actor who should, with any justice, be working with the best directors around. He has a naturalism that can convince you he just walked into the movie straight from real life. He makes Poole multidimensional, especially when he has be tough but vulnerable within the same scene. At the end of the movie, he has a moment where he realizes how messed up he is, and it's a quiet, but fully real moment -- the mark of a gifted actor. Rachel McAdams might seem a bit too cute for her role, a part that seems to call for someone a tad more feral, but she plays the character flawlessly -- consistently displaying a natural gift for teasing comedy. The always dependable Tim Robbins, who has a gift for knowing exactly how "big" he can play a character, delivers a portrait of midlife crisis without an ounce of judgment toward the character, and without playing up the emotions in order to win the audience's sympathies. All the performers are emotionally open, even when the characters aren't, and their interplay has an ease and charm that keeps this very slight, gentle movie humming along. There are no show-stopping scenes, big revelations, or intense shouting matches in The Lucky Ones. Director Neil Burger understands that the best tools he has are these actors, and he gives them space to work. Dirk Wittenborn's classically structured script offers a series of vignettes that continually allow the characters to grow without sacrificing their basic personalities. Unlike most of the Iraq War movies, this one has no political ax to grind. The filmmakers and actors aren't serving up stereotypes or an agenda, just three very human characters suffering through very specific hardships, and surviving thanks to a shared humanity.

Product Details

Release Date:
Original Release:
Lions Gate
Region Code:
[Wide Screen]
[Dolby AC-3 Surround Sound]
Sales rank:

Special Features

Closed Caption; "A Look Inside The Lucky Ones" featurette

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Rachel McAdams Colee Dunn
Tim Robbins Fred Cheaver
Michael Peña TK Poole
Molly Hagan Pat Cheaver
Mark L. Young Scott Cheaver
Howard Platt Stan Tilson
Arden Myrin Barbara Tilson
Coburn Goss Peter Tilson

Technical Credits
Neil Burger Director,Producer,Screenwriter
Deborah Aquila Casting
Steffen Aumüller Executive Producer
Doug Bernheim Musical Direction/Supervision
Bill Block Executive Producer
Claus Clausen Executive Producer
Jay Faires Musical Direction/Supervision
Elliot Ferwerda Executive Producer
Naomi Geraghty Editor
Jenny Gering Costumes/Costume Designer
Marina Grasic Executive Producer
Paul Hanson Executive Producer
Rolfe Kent Score Composer
Brian Koppelman Producer
Jan Körbelin Executive Producer
David Levien Producer
Brian McCormack Executive Producer
Adam Merims Executive Producer
Tom Ortenberg Executive Producer
Leslie Pope Production Designer
Declan Quinn Cinematographer
Jan Roelfs Production Designer
Rick Schwartz Producer
Claire Simon Casting
Dirk Wittenborn Screenwriter
Tricia Wood Casting

Scene Index

Disc #1 -- The Lucky Ones
1. Home [8:49]
2. Road Trip [7:41]
3. Crazy [7:51]
4. Divorce [9:44]
5. Leadership [8:10]
6. Church [9:21]
7. Guests [7:22]
8. Picnic [7:18]
9. Canada [12:44]
10. Confession [13:40]
11. Back Home [6:44]
12. End Credits [6:45]


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The Lucky Ones 5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 2 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I thought this movie was realistic and yet had some funny parts to it. I liked this movie.