Lonesome Jim

This 2005 Sundance Film Festival entry uses the cliché of a big, bad city chasing an aspiring somebody back to his/her small hometown of losers and never-will-bes. Garden State did it. Elizabethtown did it. Now Lonesome Jim is doing it. However, Steve Buscemi’s deft talents behind the camera make this oft-used premise fresh and compelling. Casey Affleck stars as the title character who embodies defeat, depression and suicidal tendencies when he runs back home to Indiana. However, his jaded and jaundiced father and suicidal brother offer no consoling euphemisms. Neither does his relentlessly cheerful mother, who has been incarcerated for a crime her drug-dealing brother committed. But a subtle angel arrives in the form of a single mom and nurse (Liv Tyler) who lifts Affleck’s and the audience’s spirits, even when they’re at their lowest.


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