Home Room (2003)
Average Rating: 5.6/10
Reviews Counted: 22
Fresh: 12 | Rotten: 10
No consensus yet.
Average Rating: 4.4/10
Critic Reviews: 10
Fresh: 2 | Rotten: 8
No consensus yet.
Average Rating: 3.7/5
User Ratings: 5,444
American independent filmmaker Paul F. Ryan makes his feature debut with the psychological drama Home Room. The students of Valley High School try to get on with their lives in the aftermath of a traumatic school shooting in which nine students were killed. Even though the perpetrator is dead, the townspeople still want to find some answers. Detective Martin Van Zandt (Victor Garber) decides to interrogate high school student Alicia Browning (Busy Philipps), who was present during the attack.
Sep 5, 2003 Wide
Oct 14, 2003
DEJ Productions - Official Site
Detective Martin Van...
James Pickens Jr.
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Weighted by good intentions, Ryan turns a potentially riveting story of two lost souls shaken by trauma into a sappy teen drama.
Alicia and Deanna's journey toward friendship, or at least a truer understanding, is moving.
In the midst of this didactic, self-conscious movie about a high school shooting comes an extraordinary and intense performance by a young actress named Busy Philipps, which elevates the whole picture.
Overall, it plays like the world's longest -- over two hours -- after-school special.
At 133 minutes, Home Room is sluggishly paced and refuses to lighten up for even a second.
Though the film is overlong (it runs over two hours), it's never boring - mainly due to a pair of fantastic lead performances.
The relationship that Deanna and Alicia forge is fascinating...as it allows for a genuine search for truth instead of something that is forced or contrived.
Thanks to Philipps's explosive need and Christensen's struggling vulnerability, we see the human costs inherent in tragedy once the TV trucks have left and only the haunting remains.
Dismal but not disheartening, this tale of picking up the pieces is as cutting as those pieces can be and as satisfying as cleaning up the mess.
Its noble intentions are undermined by syrupy, movie-of- the-week direction.
A powerful movie that loses some of its momentum by touching on too many stories. It's not always easy to watch, but it's thought provoking.
Ryan's tough-minded little movie avoids any sort of sentimentality; nothing warm and fuzzy here, just honest emotions from two excellent young actresses.
Audience Reviews for Home Room
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