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The Safety of Objects
2003 - R - 121 Mins.
Director: Rose Troche
Producer: Dorothy Berwin
Written By: Rose Troche
Starring: Glenn Close, Dermot Mulroney, Patricia Clarkson, Joshua Jackson, Moira Kelly, Timothy Olyphant, Jessica Campbell, Mary Kay Place, Kristen Stewart
Review by: Joe Rickey
   
Four overlapping stories surrounding each family and how they have to deal with four distinct problems including being passed over for a promotion, a comatose son, divorce, and a family stuck in a completely trivial and altogether mundane life. The film, written and directed by Rose Troche, is a stunning success because of high quality acting by a supremely top-notch cast and surprisingly solid direction by Troche (Bedrooms and Hallways, Go Fish).

The Safety of Objects attracted an unbelievably great cast of actors both young and old. The film resembles P.T. Anderson’s 1999 film Magnolia in the way that it weaves many different stories together and connects them in some way with one another. The film is able to have a subtlety effective impact on the audience because of the way director Troche manages to give each character enough screen time to develop during the course of the film. The film is simply a heartbreaking and beautiful production. Troche is able to surprise the audience because she never once tips her hand so when some new plot development comes up you are actually surprised because it was never telegraphed beforehand. Troche is also able to use the frequently implemented device of hearing what a character is thinking through voiceover and make it fresh, have impact, and, at times, even light-hearted and humorous. Some might say that Troche shamefully takes ideas from the aforementioned Magnolia and the film American Beauty, and just about every Todd Solondz film to this point. In reality, Troche is able to take universal themes and ideas and apply them to the situations in the film.

All of Troche’s hard work would have gone for naught if she had an incapable cast to work with. Luckily, such fine actors as Glenn Close, Dermot Mulroney, Mary Kay Place, and a cast that also includes some up and coming actors like Kristin Stewart (Panic Room) and Joshua Jackson. Each cast member emotes various emotions and dialogue with superb skill. Joshua Jackson, in particular, surprises because he has squandered many a chance in such pathetic films as Gossip and The Skulls in the past. Here he is able to handle every situation without a shade of the heavy-handedness that has plagued his past performances.

And of course, the veteran actors ably perform in their respective roles without appearing to be sleepwalking through the film at any point.

Overall, The Safety of Objects is a great drama all around.
 
Movie Guru Rating
An excellent film.  Among the best in its Genre.  Worth seeing in the Theater. An excellent film.  Among the best in its Genre.  Worth seeing in the Theater. An excellent film.  Among the best in its Genre.  Worth seeing in the Theater. An excellent film.  Among the best in its Genre.  Worth seeing in the Theater.
  4 out of 5 stars

 
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