HOME |  CULT MOVIES | COMPETITIONS | ADVERTISE |  CONTACT US |  ABOUT US
 
 
 
Newest Reviews
Strangler's Web
Host
Nimic
House of Bamboo
Murder Me, Monster
Hell and High Water
Possessor
Flint
Miserables, Les
Ritz, The
Patrick
Cemetery
Girls of the Sun
Princess and the Goblin, The
Skyfire
Upright
Incredible Kung Fu Mission
Dirty Cops
You Cannot Kill David Arquette
Leap of Faith: William Friedkin on The Exorcist
Son's Room, The
Evil Hits Evil
Agency
Blue My Mind
Thumbelina
Proxima
Aprile
Assassination Nation
Golden Key, The
Image Book, The
On Body and Soul
Unhinged
Eyewitness
Girlfriends
Danger Within
Rent-A-Pal
Battle in Outer Space
H-Man, The
Painted Bird, The
Finding Steve McQueen
   
 
Newest Articles
Bad Love: The Night Porter on Blu-ray
Brevity is the Soul of Weird: Short Sharp Shocks on Blu-ray
Get Your Ass to Mars: Total Recall on Blu-ray
Call the Professionals: Le Cercle Rouge on Blu-ray
When There's No More Room in Hell: Dawn of the Dead on Blu-ray
The Butterfly Effect: Mothra on Blu-ray
Living Room Theatre: Play for Today Volume 1 on Blu-ray
Didn't He Do Well: The Bruce Forsyth Show on DVD
Blood Wedding: The Bride with White Hair on Blu-ray
The Inhuman Element: The Ladykillers on 4K UHD
As You Like It, Baby: Breathless on Blu-ray
Stargazing: Light Entertainment Rarities on DVD
Down to the Welles: Orson Welles Great Mysteries Volume 2 on DVD
Herding Cats: Sleepwalkers on Blu-ray
Confessions of a Porn Star: Adult Material on DVD
They're Still Not Sure It is a Baby: Eraserhead on Blu-ray
Werewolves are Real: Dog Soldiers on Digital
Rose: A Love Story - Producers April Kelley and Sara Huxley Interview
Phone Phreak: 976-EVIL on Blu-ray
Living the Nightmare: Dementia on Blu-ray
Becky and The Devil to Pay: Ruckus and Lane Skye Interview
Big Top Bloodbath: Circus of Horrors on Blu-ray
A Knock on the Door at 4 O'clock in the Morning: The Strangers on Blu-ray
Wives of the Skies: Honey Lauren Interview
To Catch a Thief: After the Fox on Blu-ray
   
 
  Dear Eleanor What would Mrs. Roosevelt do?
Year: 2016
Director: Kevin Connolly
Stars: Liana Liberato, Isabelle Fuhrman, Jessica Alba, Luke Wilson, Josh Lucas, Joel Courtney, Patrick Schwarzenegger, Ione Skye, Claire van der Boom
Genre: Comedy, DramaBuy from Amazon
Rating:  6 (from 1 vote)
Review: In 1962, California pumpkin farm girl Ellie Potter (Liana Liberato) is devastated when her mom is killed in a hit-and-run. While her dad (Luke Wilson) drowns his sorrows at the local bar, teenage Ellie struggles to raise four siblings and tend the farm by herself. Sick of being taken for granted and driven to honour her late mother, Ellie embarks on an impulsive adventure. Together with fun-loving best friend Max (Isabelle Fuhrman), Ellie sneaks away in her father's bright blue convertible on a cross-country road trip to meet her mom's idol, former First Lady Eleanor Roosevelt. Along an eventful journey the girls cross paths with some interesting people and share many misadventures.

Produced by Leonardo DiCaprio's Appian Way Productions, Dear Eleanor spins a slight yet nonetheless heartwarming tale, filtered through the warmth of early Sixties nostalgia and energized by sparky, charismatic performances from rising stars Isabelle Fuhrman and in particular Liane Liberato. Both horror movie veterans, the young leads seem eager to break away from the creepy characters they have played in the past. Their chemistry and infectious good spirits keep the movie consistently watchable in spite of a ramshackle plot. It is worth watching for Ellie and Max's impromptu dance tribute to Marilyn Monroe alone. Actor Kevin Connolly, best known for his role as 'E' on the popular HBO series and spin-off movie Entourage, has a parallel career as a director both on television and indie film including Whatever We Do (2003) and Gardener of Eden (2007). Perhaps mindful of the dubious gender politics central to Entourage, Connolly latched onto a script that wears its feminist heart on its sleeve which is no bad thing.

Co-written by actress Aimee Garcia and Cecilia Contreras the film portrays its teen heroine as a believable hybrid of self-confidence and uncertainty and takes her on a road trip confronting contrasted incarnations of femininity. These range from the spiritual figurehead of pioneering social reformer Eleanor Roosevelt, the maternal warmth embodied by Ellie's late mother (Claire van der Boom) and a cameo from Ione Skye as a friendly stranger, the sensuality of Marilyn Monroe and Max's Aunt Daisy (Jessica Alba) who proves a hybrid of the latter two. Unfortunately the film fails to expound on Eleanor Roosevelt's significance as a feminist icon and champion of social reform in any meaningful way. In addition its concept of feminism does not amount to much more than rehashing a lot of Disneyesque clichés about friends sticking together and never giving up on their dreams. As a nostalgic comedy however Dear Eleanor packs no small amount of charm, landing likable characters in frequently funny situations. In particular a subplot wherein the girls end up sharing their car with Frank Morris (Josh Lucas), the same real-life escaped convict Clint Eastwood portrayed in Escape from Alcatraz (1979). Their awkward meal together in a diner observed by cops whilst bonding over quotes from the movies Sunset Boulevard (1950) and Night of the Hunter (1955) prove especially memorable. Meanwhile Jessica Alba enjoys her best role in years as a showgirl fallen on hard times and performs a splendidly sexy retro-Sixties styled dance routine.

Had its plot been tighter and feminist subtext more pointed Dear Eleanor could well have been a more substantial comedy-drama rather than merely a pleasant and engaging one. Even so Kevin Connolly – working with cinematographer Steven Fierberg – exhibits a keen eye for poetic visuals. What is more the film has a charmingly quirky sense of humour and Liana Liberato's nuanced turn wrings every ounce of emotion from the winning climax.

Reviewer: Andrew Pragasam

 

This review has been viewed 1968 time(s).

As a member you could Rate this film

 
Review Comments (0)


Untitled 1

Login
  Username:
 
  Password:
 
   
 
Forgotten your details? Enter email address in Username box and click Reminder. Your details will be emailed to you.
   

Latest Poll
Which star is the best at shouting?
Arnold Schwarzenegger
Brian Blessed
Tiffany Haddish
Steve Carell
Olivia Colman
Captain Caveman
Sylvester Stallone
Gerard Butler
Samuel L. Jackson
Bipasha Basu
   
 
   

Recent Visitors
Graeme Clark
Enoch Sneed
Andrew Pragasam
Darren Jones
Paul Smith
  Lee Fiveash
  Mick Stewart
  Dsfgsdfg Dsgdsgsdg
   

 

Last Updated: