The Favor (2008) - Rotten Tomatoes

The Favor (2008)

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Movie Info

Following up the acclaimed documentary Children of the Street, filmmaker Eva Aridjis made her narrative-feature debut with this bittersweet drama starring Frank Wood and Ryan Donowho. Wood plays Lawrence, a man who decides to take in Johnny (Donowho), the troubled teenaged son of his recently deceased high-school sweetheart. Twenty-five years ago, Caroline (Paige Turco) broke Lawrence's heart. These days, Lawrence is a single, middle-aged photographer leading a quiet life with his loyal canine companion in Bayonne, NJ. When Lawrence receives a surprise phone call from a recently divorced Caroline, romantic feelings are rekindled and his life suddenly takes on new meaning. Unfortunately, a life with Caroline wasn't in the cards for Lawrence, because shortly after the high-school sweethearts reconnect, Caroline dies in a sudden and tragic accident. Now, in order to prevent Carlone's troubled 16-year-old son, Johnny (Donowho), from being placed in foster care, Lawrence adopts the boy and tries his hardest to be a caring father. But Johnny wants nothing to do with Lawrence, instead choosing to follow in his biological father's footsteps by becoming a petty criminal and constructing an impenetrable wall of anger and silence. It seems that the only person capable of breaking through to Johnny is Mariana (Isidra Vega), a pretty neighborhood girl with whom the boy forms a warm bond. In time, Johnny begins to realize that Lawrence is a respectable role model and caring father figure who is willing to make the sacrifices needed for him to have a brighter future.

Cast

Frank Wood
as Lawrence
Isidra Vega
as Mariana
Paige Turco
as Caroline
Paul Lazar
as Mr. Smith
Michael Higgins
as Mr. Ritter
Luke Robertson
as Young Lawrence
Laura Breckenridge
as Young Caroline
Wally Dunn
as Dr. Charles
Sterling K. Brown
as Policeman No. 1
Aldo Perez
as Harris
Brian Delate
as Det. Stuart
Marceline Hugot
as History Teacher
Aurélia Thiérrée
as Photo Shop Girl
Richard M. Davidson
as Principal Foreman
Justin Christopher
as Family Court Hearing Officer
Donald Eric Cumming
as Boy with Iguana
Mario Mendoza
as Mariana's Father
C.C. Loveheart
as Woman Who Calls Police Station
Ken Martin
as Policeman No.2
Geraldine Bartlett
as Zoology Teacher
Annette Arnold
as Woman Who Brings Lucy Home
Susan Willis
as Old Lady
Jayne Haynes
as Waitress in Diner
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Critic Reviews for The Favor

All Critics (18) | Top Critics (10)

It is a flawed but intriguing film that promises better things to come from its filmmaker.

May 16, 2008 | Rating: 2/4

While people looking to get away from the big explosions and broad comedy that accompany most summer movies will appreciate the effort, this seems like the kind of thing you should be getting for free on TV.

May 9, 2008 | Rating: 2/4 | Full Review…

The Favor is that rare film that at every turn exhibits good taste and a sense of restraint.

May 5, 2008 | Full Review…

A dreary, interminable drama written and directed by Eva Aridjis, is exactly one-third of a good movie.

May 2, 2008 | Rating: 2/5

The Favor ultimately takes itself too seriously and ends up stranded in an unconvincing no man's land of cute bleakness.

May 1, 2008 | Full Review…

Writer-director Eva Aridjis has a flat style that's frankly numbing; Wood tries valiantly, but he and Donowho are both dragged down by the script.

April 30, 2008 | Rating: 2/6 | Full Review…
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