Friday, October 19, 2007

Film of the Weekend

Movie name: In the Valley of Elah
Year of release: 2007
Director: Paul Haggis
Stars: Tommy Lee Jones, Charlize Theron, Susan Sarandon, Jason Patric, Frances Fisher, Josh Brolin, James Franco
Genre: Drama
Score out of ten (whole numbers only): 8

After the surprise hit that was "Crash", Paul Haggis returns with a truly solid and beautifully accomplished film, anchored in solid performances by remarkable actors. "In the Valley of Elah" starts by being an investigation into the disappearance of a soldier recently returned from the Iraq war, but quickly evolves to something deeper than that. What the father, played with an incredible restraint and quiet intensity by Tommy Lee Jones, seeks is the salvation of the nuclear foundation of his family, that has slowly been devastated by the effects of wars. This is also something hunting the lonely detective that Charlize Theron so perfectly embodies. A moving film shot beautifully by the remarkable Roger Deakins (usual collaborator of the Coen brothers).