Janie Jones (2011)
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Critic Reviews for Janie Jones
"Janie Jones'' would feel more assured if Rosenthal had shown more inclination to commit.
Nivola and Breslin make a terrific mismatched pair in a film that often resembles a mash-up of "Crazy Heart" and Sofia Coppola's "Somewhere"...
A mixture of discordant notes and way-too-familiar chords.
The movie works because it's essentially an old-fashioned two-hander for a couple of subtle and terrific actors.
After a messy, cliched first half, Janie Jones is barely salvaged by the lightweight sweetness that emerges once it becomes a two-hander for Breslin and Nivola.
Audience Reviews for Janie Jones
The movie starts with Mary Ann(Elisabeth Shue) taking her 13-year old daughter Janie(Abigail Breslin) to meet her father Ethan(Alessandro Nivola), who is in Little Rock touring with his band, for the first time. Whatever Mary Ann was expecting, it could have not been that Ethan says that he does not remember her, much less not claim Janie as his own, even with a copy of her birth certificate listing him as the father. So, Mary Ann forces the issue by leaving Janie behind at the concert venue, leading Janie to call 911. That leaves her with a choice of getting on the tour bus or taking a tour of the foster care system. With Ethan's assent, she chooses the former. Even though the plot of "Janie Jones" sounds like it has been done plenty of times before, the movie finds its own nuanced downbeat way, hitting just the right notes, mostly due to the excellence of its two lead performances.(However, the less said of Elisabeth Shue the better.) Alessandro Nivola is especially good playing a tortured soul who with the departure of his enablers from his life is forced for once to reconsider his life while learning how to act around a 13-year old daughter.(Learning from watching her irresponsible mother, Janie can take care of herself while still being young enough to not have to think about psychoanalysis yet.) While the movie is subtle about its condemnation of drug and alcohol abuse, it also helps that Ethan is not instantly likable, as the movie does not take the easy way out.
The Little Miss Sunshine star is a very talented teen now. This movie was very enjoyable. Good music. Touching story. A really well done Independent film....love these!
A heart-wrenching and deeply absorbing movie. It`s the best film of its kind since Crazy Heart. A powerful and emotionally gripping film that just tugs on your heart. Abigail Breslin and Alessandro Nivola gives outstanding performances. Breslin is truly heart breaking and brilliant. Nivola is magnificent. A tremendous surprise to watch. A wonderfully written and exceptionally crafted work.