Ballast

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Released 2008

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Movie Summary

Director:
Keely Christian
Released:
2008
Rating:
Not Available
In the cold, winter light of a rural Mississippi Delta township, a man's suicide radically transforms three characters' lives and throws off-balance what has long been a static arrangement among them. Marlee is a single mother struggling to scratch a living for herself and James, her 12-year-old son, who has begun to stumble under drug and violence pressures. So when the opportunity to seek safe harbor at a new home arises, she grabs it, though the property is shared by Lawrence, a man with whom Marlee has feuded bitterly since James's birth. With circumstances thrusting them into proximity, a subtle interdependence and common purpose emerge for Marlee and Lawrence as they navigate grief, test new waters, and tentatively move forward.

Metacritic Score

  • 100

    Variety Robert Koehler

    A rock-ribbed sense of committed, personal cinema and a core belief in people being able to pull themselves out of misery supports Ballast, an extraordinary debut by editor-writer-...

  • 90

    The New York Times Manohla Dargis

    Shot with a sure hand and a cast of unknowns, the film doesn't so much tell a story as develop a tone and root around a place that, despite the intimate camerawork, remains shroude...

  • 90

    Los Angeles Times Kenneth Turan

    A quintessentially American story that unmistakably echoes European art house cinema, combining the aesthetic purity of France's Robert Bresson with the social consciousness of Bel...

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