The Dry Land (2010)
Average Rating: 5.4/10
Reviews Counted: 23
Fresh: 14 | Rotten: 9
No consensus yet.
Average Rating: 5.1/10
Critic Reviews: 8
Fresh: 5 | Rotten: 3
No consensus yet.
Average Rating: 3.1/5
User Ratings: 460
A soldier comes home from the war but can't find peace in his heart and mind in this independent drama. James (Ryan O'Nan) returns to his hometown in Texas after serving a long hitch in Iraq, and is warmly welcomed by his wife, Sara (America Ferrera), and best friend, Michael (Jason Ritter). However, his homecoming party is awkward and it's clear James is not the same as he was before he left. Sara's father, David (Benito Martinez), arranges for James to get a job working beside Michael at a
Jul 30, 2010 Wide
Nov 9, 2010
Freestyle Releasing - Official Site
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Williams draws upon countless earlier dramas without adding anything fresh or memorable to the discussion.
Sincere performances elevate an underdeveloped script and awkward filmmaking.
Just another cost-of-war movie, you say? Yes, and that's exactly the point.
This typical covert censorship in war movies is so conventional and prevalent by now, that there's an actual office in existence called the US Army Entertainment Industry Liaison. Indeed, authenticity when it comes to locations and props, has its price.
A strong first film, and with a better-honed script, Williams should prove to be a director to watch.
A very familiar Stateside war drama -- narratively, the film just goads when it's convenient and shrinks when it suits its purposes, never feeling like an honest exploration of its characters' problems.
Perhaps the most surprising thing about Ryan Piers Williams's gloomy post Afghan/Iraq war drama is that there aren't more such coming-home movies being made by upstart filmmakers.
Williams and Ferrera emphasize the heartache of coming home in their Iraq War drama The Dry Land, and the result is a worthy family melodrama for the Iraq War generation.
Writer-director Ryan Piers Williams seems to be diligently working through a checklist of returning-warrior-movie clichés.
A moving drama about an Iraq war veteran suffering from PTSD and the soul loss he experiences.
So is there a middle ground between supporting the troops but not condoning them? The military certainly hopes not. Which makes the film, however compassionate, a bitter pill to swallow. Or as they prescribe for whatever ails destroyed vets - Take a pill.
'The Dry Land' is appropriately slow low-key, in keeping with the war hero's bewildered face even in stress or violence.
The PTSD subject matter already feels worked over and [Ryan Piers] Williams doesn't find a new or memorable approach to take it to another level.
Reminiscent of The Messenger in its ability to capture unexpressed sorrow, its strong acting and story-telling make it a film that will haunt you.
Audience Reviews for The Dry Land
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