Imaginary Heroes Reviews
Director: Dan Harris
Summary: The seemingly stable Travis family crumbles when one of the children kills himself in this wrenching drama about long-buried secrets and lies, and ties that bind too tightly. Soon after the tragedy, patriarch Ben (Jeff Daniels) distances himself from everyone else, intent on coping with his pain alone; his wife, Sandy (Sigrouney Weaver), turns to pot for release and escape; and their restless son, Tim (Emile Hirsch), longs to be elsewhere.
My Thoughts: "Great movie with a great cast delivering great performances. There is a scene near the end of the movie between Jeff Daniels and Emile Hirsch that just blew me away with the strong emotions it generated through the screen. I felt every bit of it. This movie is relatable to anyone who has lost someone close to them, who feels very small in a big world, or who has never fit in. I am sure we have all had those moments. Loved Weaver's and Hirsch's mother and son relationship. Just a good movie about a family fighting to hold on. Struggling to make sense of life and where it's going, and if they will make it to another day."
Don't believe me? Here's the set-up: Matt (Kip Pardue, whatever happened to him?) is a star high school swimmer and the toast of his family. But then he kills himself, devastating his mother Sandy (Weaver) and his father Ben (Jeff Daniels). His brother Tim (Hirsch) nearly falls apart. Sure, there's more of a boldness to this film when Ben does all he can to cheer up his wife, including offering her plastic surgery, and especially when Tim has a gay encounter with the boy next door (Ryan Donowho). But the movie has no real personality of its own. It just amounts to a cop out.
There is no finer young actor, and damned few older, than Emile Hirsch. If you haven't seen 'Into The Wild', you really, really ought to. It takes a once-in-a-generation actor to pull off Emile's performance in that movie.
But as for 'Imaginary Heroes', it too will go into my list of movies I'd want if I were stranded on another planet. The kiss scene with Ryan Donowho alone could burn into my TV and I'd be just fine with that. Their interplay was dead on, and I suppose the fact that they wrote and performed a song together in the film says something about their artistic relationship and talent. I love this film.
Overall, this a film worth watching. Its story telling is a little choppy but the emotions invoked out the final moments are the best parts of the film.