3 Backyards (2010)
Average Rating: 6.7/10
Reviews Counted: 17
Fresh: 13 | Rotten: 4
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Average Rating: 6.4/10
Critic Reviews: 6
Fresh: 4 | Rotten: 2
No consensus yet.
Average Rating: 2.7/5
User Ratings: 1,050
Three dark-hued tales of life in a seemingly quiet Long Island suburb collide in this ambitious drama from writer and director Eric Mendelsohn. John (Elias Koteas) and his wife (Kathryn Erbe) are clearly unhappy with one another, though they don't want to talk about what's wrong, and when his flight out of town is canceled at the last minute, John decides not to go home. Instead, he checks into a motel and spends his spare time wandering the neighborhood where he used to live. Peggy (Edie Falco)
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Mendelsohn's dialogue is, for the most part, as spare as poetry, and the three stories are woven together masterfully and acquire a gleaming aura that's almost pastoral.
Little is left to chance, and every detail contributes to a tightly schematic, microcosmic poetic concept.
Well-acted and acutely observed, the sort of cerebral fare you can more typically find on HBO than in theaters these days.
A story in which poor real folks are granted perspective only by brushing up against starlets, accidents, and villains of the tabloid press.
The movie has none of the smugness of American Beauty: You could dream of living in a world like this.
This dark, well-acted suburban tale is follow-up to the gifted Mendleson's most promising feature debut
And although Mendelsohn maintains a certain cool detachment, he also allows the film to occasionally soar in unexpected ways.
Mendelsohn may believe he's presenting an unvarnished look at middle-class America, but if these kinds of people exist, you won't recognize them.
Unlike those indie directors whose feel-good, P.C. claptrap predictably gets praised by the very people it flatters, Mendelsohn makes suburban poetry that opposes the way middle-class film culture likes to fantasize itself.
It may not be the Long Island the natives are more accustomed to, but that sense of place from a prism of both wonderment and despair, is deep into the moment of those physical and human worlds alike, playing out sensually and emotionally in suburbia.
Three lives intersect over the course of a fall day in Long Island in Eric Mendelsohn's dazzling and delicate independent drama 3 Backyards.
Tries to give suburban malaise a fresh spin with dreamlike visuals and overbearing music.
At once lyrical and mysterious, familiar yet enigmatic...It's a movie that raises more questions than it answers. It leaves you feeling haunted and touched.
Eric Mendelsohn's first film since 1999's Judy Berlin suggests Little Children as helmed by a nature documentarian.
An exquisitely observed slice-of-life with a genuinely transporting feel for its setting. Sumptuously dreamlike and compellingly elusive.
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