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The United States of Leland has its moments, but they're undermined by a muddled plot, unsympathetic characters, and frustratingly uneven performances. Read critic reviews

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Movie Info

A withdrawn young man, Leland Fitzgerald (Ryan Gosling) is imprisoned for the murder of a mentally disabled boy, who also happened to be the brother of his girlfriend, Becky (Jena Malone). As the community struggles to deal with the killing, Pearl Madison (Don Cheadle), a teacher at the prison, decides to write about Leland's case. Meanwhile, others affected by the murder, including Becky and her sister, Julie (Michelle Williams), must contend with their own problems.

Cast & Crew

Don Cheadle
Pearl Madison
Ryan Gosling
Leland P. Fitzgerald
Chris Klein
Allen Harris
Jena Malone
Becky Pollard
Lena Olin
Marybeth Fitzgerald
Kevin Spacey
Albert T. Fitzgerald
Martin Donovan
Harry Pollard
Ann Magnuson
Karen Pollard
Sherilyn Fenn
Mrs. Calderon
Mark Damon
Executive Producer
Stewart Hall
Executive Producer
Sammy Lee
Executive Producer
Jeremy Enigk
Original Music
James Glennon
Cinematographer
Edward T. McAvoy
Production Designer
Kevin Constant
Art Direction
Jan Pascale
Set Decoration
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Critic Reviews for The United States of Leland

All Critics (93) | Top Critics (34) | Fresh (32) | Rotten (61)

Audience Reviews for The United States of Leland

  • Feb 19, 2013
    Ryan Gosling, and Don Cheadle, are fantastic in this interesting take about a teenager who commits a murder, but can't recall the crime. Gosling's character, with his gentle demeanor, make it hard to grasp why he would do such a thing. Young Ryan's range of talent really shines here. He has such a way about his display of cool emotions that I find mesmerizing. Really well done film...
    Cynthia S Super Reviewer
  • Jul 07, 2010
    Leland is a straightforward drama, putting all the cards on the table and allowing you to see the aftermath of unexplainable death in its truest form. http://proofinpicture.wordpress.com/2010/06/30/united-states-of-leland/
    Christopher H Super Reviewer
  • Apr 25, 2010
    Not as good as I was expecting.So disappointing
    Brody M Super Reviewer
  • Feb 13, 2010
    A young man named Leland sees the world in a whole different perspective then the those around him. We watch and learn from his time in a juvenile detention center as a teacher questions him about Why he did what he did to end up there in the first place. Ryan Gosling is an actor who I really admire and adore, because I think he's brilliant. He is joined by talents such as Kevin Spacey, Lena Olin and Din Cheadle. A very introuging cast for an equally introuging story. It is abit strange, very sad and it makes you think. It's jumps from person to person and I found it hard to understand what the different "mini-stories" had to do with anything at some times, but of course it all rounds up in the end. I liked it. At times the story didn't really manage to keep my attention but it was good most of the time. It's a very sad story, the character Leland is a very complicated one and I think Gosling plays him very well. I found it hard to grasp the actual concept of the film, maybe watching it a second time might help? You have to be utterly concntrated on the film to really grasp everything and I sadly was not while I watched it so a re-watch is definitley something that's needed. Good interesting film with a good cast.
    Charlotta L Super Reviewer

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