Rudderless (2014)

This movie claims to be part comedy, but I didn't catch myself, laughing, giggling, or even smirking during it. That doesn't mean it was bad, it just wasn't a comedy. This was, in fact, very good, but it was in no way funny.

This movie has a cast that is too good for it. Billy Crudup is our lead, and he manages to carry the movie pretty darn well. His role is that of a guy who is very driven, has a career and is really heavily invested in it, but he seems to make time for his son (played by Miles Heizer). After his son dies in a tragic event, he loses his way and any lust for life. His marriage crumbles, and he finds himself living in a boat, alone and barely employed.

Then his now ex-wife (played by Felicity Huffman) needs him to sign some papers and drops off a box of CDs. The CDs are what Miles had made before his death, and it turns out, they are songs he wrote, performed, and they take Billy back and make him try to understand the child that he had and didn't know as well as he ever wanted to. Eventually, he finds a bar that lets amateurs on stage. He then performs one of his son's songs.

In comes Anton Yelchin, who you may remember as Scotty in the Star Trek reboot, as the young guy who hears the song and decides that he needs to attach his wagon to that star. He tries really hard, and he even manages to wrangle in some actual talent to back them up on other instruments. Eventually, the sound they wind up with is very reminiscent of Mumford and Suns (in my opinion).

Laurence Fishburne has a fairly throw-away character, but he manages to create a person who is even relatable as the owner of a small music shop. He has his own hopes and dreams. He has things he wants out of life and people he cares about. The character is written very well, and the character is played just as well.

The director of this movie has cast himself a bit part. William H. Macy is the guy who owns the bar where various acts get up and perform. One of those acts is NOT Selena Gomez. Instead, she is given acting requirements, and she falls very short. Instead, one of the more entertaining acts is Kate Micucci singing a song where she is upset about someone calling her a whore.

Direction was good
Story was very good
Acting was very good
Music was good
Dialog was very good

Bottom Line: A very entertaining and dramatic film with a lot more depth to the storyline than I had expected.



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