Saturday, April 04, 2009

The Cake Eaters

Mary Stuart Masterson directorial debut that I have been wanting to watch for a long time and finally I was able to enjoy this quiet but impressive movie about rural America that definitively has similar style to some of her acting movies and particularly made me recall the fantastic Fried Green Tomatoes.

With a script written by Jayce Bartok the film tells a slice of Americana about two families, one with only males and another with only females. Easy (Bruce Dern) is the local butcher that a month ago became a widow when his wife died. He has two sons, Beagle that took care of his mother until death and the older Guy that just came back after three years unsuccessfully trying to be a rock star in New York City. Then you have Georgia (Kristen Steward) a 15-year-old beauty with a degenerative nervous disease that has come to terms with her imminent mortality and decides to experiment sex before is too late. She lives between her overprotective mother and her free-spirited grandmother Marge with whom she often takes refuge. Georgia chooses Beagle to get rid of “that”, but Beagles’ gentle awkwardness allows Georgia to get more than she bargained for.

A very nice and simple story with great directorial abilities by Masterson, she is so good that the large ensemble cast really performs superbly, as they are very natural and perform mostly with silent expressions; especially Kristen Steward that has a remarkable performance that absolutely does not resemble any Hollywood disabled character that you ever seen, as she manages to draw a character that is tragic but not pitiful, strong, endearing, funny, sexy, and with none of the usual clichés. This young actress definitively is one that I will continue to follow as she truly has impressed me in the few roles I have seen her.

The film is so unpretentious -because of the tech specs and the story- that you get the feeling that you saw authentic situations as you watch everything slowly developing and unraveling the complex nature of each character. At the end is a nice peaceful experience that could leave you with a good smile in your face and very satisfied.

Not your regular American Independent film that has collected four awards in American festivals for Mary Stuart Masterson and definitively all are well deserved.

If you’re in the mood for a homey American indie that tells a slice of rural Americana then this is the movie to watch.


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