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Rated R · 112 minutes · 2009

Drama, Romance, War
Ben Foster is riveting as Staff Sgt. Will Montgomery, an American soldier returning from war. He has a little time left on his commitment, and he’s assigned the duty of informing next-of-kin about military deaths. Partnered with the hard-nosed, by-the-book Capt. Stuart Dorsett (Woody Harrelson), they go door-to-door, giving the worst of news. Foster, who has irritated me in the past, gives the sort of reserved, searing performance that I didn’t know he was capable of. Harrelson has never been better, and he should be in line for an Oscar nomination; he’s already received a Golden Globes nod. Samantha Morton is excellent as one of the people they have to visit. The movie is often very hard to watch; while director Oren Moverman balances out his film with suitable levels of warmth and humor, the movie is principally about the pain and the hardship of delivering people to their worst nightmares. Well-done on all levels.
Official Site: www.themessengermovie.com
Director: Oren Moverman
Producer: Steffen Aumueller, Nathaniel Bolotin, Benjamin Goldhirsh and Mark Gordon
Cast: Ben Foster, Woody Harrelson, Samantha Morton, Jena Malone, Michael Chernus, Halley Feiffer, Peter Friedman, Kevin Hagan, Jenny Kirlin, Sam Kitchin, Lindsay Nader and Armand Schultz

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The Messenger

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Portland Mercury Knock Knock Knockin' The Messenger is three plots for the price of one, which is actually kind of a bum deal. by Marjorie Skinner 12/03/2009
Colorado Springs Independent Hard knocks Like The Hurt Locker, The Messenger skips politics to instead focus on soldiers, particularly those who have died and two who are tasked with notifying their next of kin. by Tricia Olszewski 01/07/2010
Chicago Reader The Reader's Guide to the 45th Chicago International Film Festival: Week One Selected films making their Chicago premieres at the festival through Thursday, October 15 by J.R. Jones, Cliff Doerksen, Andrea Gronvall and Joshua Katzman 10/08/2009
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Memphis Flyer A nuanced, moving homefront drama. by Chris Herrington 01/21/2010
Colorado Springs Independent Opening this week Daybreakers, Leap Year, The Young Victoria, Youth in Revolt and more. 01/07/2010

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