Tuesday, December 13, 2005

AN UNFINISHED LIFE
Robert Redford, Jennifer Lopez, Morgan Freeman, Becca Gardner, Josh Lucas, Camryn Manheim

"Every secret takes on a life of its own."

Cinema 3, SM Megamall

an unfinised life

A beautiful movie set in the scenic mountain ranges of Wyoming (although it was filmed in Canada). A woman shows up with her daughter at the ranch of her former father-in-law. Her last resort/refuge as she is desperate to hide from her abusive boyfriend. There is some bad blood between them because he blames her for the death of his beloved son. So he has his own little world tending to his ranch as well as caring for his old stable hand who was crippled after being mauled by a bear.
It focuses on the granddaughter trying to adjust to her new surroundings, trying to reach out to her grandfather and make him come back to life. It is about healing broken relationships, learning to move on despite adversities, about accepting that life goes on after losing a loved one. It provides a good insight into the human persona and how it deals with grief, lost and life in general.
It helps that it is a well directed film. Lasse Hallstrom who gave us such movies with human 'drama' like "Chocolat" and "The Cider House Rules" did a good job. Robert Redford is in his elements as an aging cowboy that feels like he was dealt a bad deal in life. Morgan Freeman who was mostly laying around does deliver the most sensible lines in the film. Even Jennifer Lopez did good sans (without) the glamorous clothes and the heavy makeup. Josh Lucas just needs to grace the screen with his mesmeric presence and I drool. I do have to mention Bart the bear too. Who would thought that a bear could symbolize a wide paradigm of significant meanings about life?
I recommend this movie because despite its simplistic story it does convey a lot of answers to life's numerous questions. And the title 'an unfinished life' is the epitaph on the grave of the main character's dead son. How hauntingly appropriate.

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