Just a few quick words about James White. The acting is superb. I could stop right there, but I’ll continue for a bit. Cynthia Nixon plays the mother, Gail White, and Nixon has certainly enjoyed many accomplishments since her days as Miranda in Sex and the City. She has played Eleanor Roosevelt to Kenneth Branagh’s Franklin in Warm Springs, the object of Alec Baldwin’s affections in Lymelife (let me take a minute to commend this sleeper of an indie where you get to see real life brothers Rory Culkin and Kieran Culkin play brothers), and numerous appearances in TV shows.
Gail’s son, James White, is played by Christopher Abbott, and I asked myself, who is this guy? He looked familiar, but in checking out his filmography, probably the most notables were A Most Violent Year (one of my favs from 2015, and one of the best-reviewed films of last year as well), and his turn in the TV show Girls. Abbott fully inhabits his role as the devoted son to a mom battling cancer. Problem is, he never really grew up, and is spiraling downward, pressure-cooker style, with a bottle of booze in hand.
This movie is not easy to watch, but you’d be hard-pressed to find better acting, and the story is achingly real. Much critical acclaim here (including Audience Award at Sundance), and I’ll be looking for what comes next for both these actors, not to mention the little known director, Josh Mond. If you shy away from potentially “depressing” movies, maybe this one isn’t for you, but I am never depressed by outstanding performances. It’s only 90 minutes, and it won’t hurt to take a look. – [DVD]
DVD Release Date: 3/29/16