Mystic River DVD

Mystic River
Cast: Laura Linney, Sean Penn, Tim Robbins, Kevin Bacon, Laurence Fishburne
Studio: Warner Bros.
Rating: 8/10

Corporate Line: When they were kids growing up together in a rough section of Boston, Jimmy Markum, Dave Boyle and Sean Devine spent their days playing stickball on the street, the way most boys did in their blue-collar neighborhood of East Buckingham. Nothing much out of the ordinary ever happened, until a moment’s decision drastically altered the course of each of their lives forever. Twenty-five years later, the three find themselves thrust back together by another tragic event–the murder of Jimmy’s 19-year-old daughter. Now a cop, Sean is assigned to the case and he and his partner are charged with unraveling the seemingly senseless crime. In the wake of the sudden and terrible loss of his child, Jimmy’s mind becomes consumed with revenge–and his own plans to find the killer. Caught up in the maelstrom is Dave, now a lost and broken man fighting to keep his demons at bay. As the investigation creeps closer to home, his wife Celeste becomes consumed by suspicion and fear, while Jimmy’s wife, Annabeth, draws her family tighter together in order to weather the storm.

The Good: Sean Penn steals this film. Penn is amazing as a mobster. I could have watched an entire film about Penn’s character alone. Hopefully Penn will notice too and give us some more parts like this, Godfather 4? We can only dream. Kevin Bacon is a wallflower to Penn and the story.

Mystic River is well crafted if not frightening. It’s the sort of film that finds you hugging your children a few times more at night. Director Clint Eastwood leaves much to the imagination and that is refreshing in a time when other directors decide that viewers aren’t smart enough to think independently. There is a lot about Mystic River that makes your skin crawl and that is part of the experience.

The Bad: Tim Robbins sounds like Forrest Gump. Sure the part he plays is of a disturbed man, but I didn’t know the guy was completely mentally handicapped. Robbins takes the part and goes way out on a limb.

DVD FEATURES: The foundation is the commentary by actors Tim Robbins and Kevin Bacon. The featurette is highlighted by “Beneath the Surface” with cast and crew interviews and “From Page to Screen” which is a making of the film featurette and selections from “The Charlie Rose Show” that are full-length interviews with Clint Eastwood, Tim Robbins and Kevin Bacon.

Frankly: I never read the book, so I’ve only commented on the movie I saw – which has become a topic of movie critics. I only know that Mystic River is terrifyingly terrific. Penn has aged like a fine wine and we can only pray we see more of him in the near future. Maybe an Oscar will assure us of that.

+ Charlie Craine






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