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Leo (2002)

Cast: Sam Shephard, Elisabeth Shue, Elisabeth Shue, more...
Director: Mehdi Norowzian, Mehdi Norowzian
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Studio: First Look Pictures
Genre: Drama, Foreign, British Drama, UK
Running Time: 103 min.
Languages: English, Spanish
Subtitles: Spanish
    see additional details...

Recently Rented By wordmoose

A literary drama offering the parallel tales of two wounded souls, director Mehdi Norowzian's tale of redemption and the struggle to find one's place in life finds an ex-convict's correspondence with a young boy offering hope for the future despite the fact that the boy has yet to find his own place in the world. Believing that her husband has been unfaithful, Mary Bloom (Elisabeth Shue) embarks on an affair with a young handyman (Justin Chambers) that results in her pregnancy. Racked with guilt when her husband dies in a car accident shortly thereafter, Mary begins to hate her son, Leo (Davis Sweat), leaving the youngster hungering for affection. Assigned correspondence with a convict for a class project, the withdrawn Leo begins to form a close bond with Stephen (Joseph Fiennes), who increasingly relies on his communication with Leo as a form of cathartic repentance. When Stephen is released from jail, he gets a job at a diner where concerned co-workers Vic (Sam Shepard) and Caroline (Deborah Unger) attempt to help him establish himself on the outside. Simultaneously brutalized by local drunk Horace (Dennis Hopper), Stephen decides to leave the diner and search for the boy whose letters carried him through his darkest days. ~ Jason Buchanan, All Movie Guide

GreenCine Member Reviews

Ambition Ten; Talent Two by talltale May 25, 2004 - 5:29 AM PDT
2 out of 3 members found this review helpful
LEO is the kind of film few people will have heard of--and that your local video store dealer will try to get you to rent because he knows nothing about it, either, and wants you to check it out for him. That's what happened to me, at least. And with a cast this interesting, why not? Let me tell you why not. This is a very ambitious attempt to deal with themes of identity, child abuse, guilt, redemption and acceptance (all wrapped around James Joyce and his Ulysses, for Christ sake!)--with almost none of the requisite writing or directing talent to back up all that ambition. The director appears to have relied upon his good cast, who undoubtedly came aboard due to the ambitious script. But acting talent can only go so far; here, it stops well short of productivity. Elizabeth Shue is particularly wasted--emoting to beat the band in a role that is one-note (well, one-and-one-half) and tiresome. A young actor named Davis Sweatt does wonders with the main character as an adolescent, and Joseph Fiennes is fine, too. Deborah Kara Unger gets abused again (she's got to stop this sort of thing), Dennis Hopper is his usual nut case, and Sam Shepard's laconic and macho. By film's end, almost anything good has fallen away and what is left seems like pure pretension. It's rare to see so much possibility come to so little.

GreenCine Member Rating

(Average 5.00)
4 Votes
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