Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Get Low (2009)

Here's a bucket list of reasons to get up and see Get Low.

1. Get Low stars Robert Duvall. He's a great American actor with credits including The Godfather, Apocalypse Now and Network. Duvall just turned 81 in January 2012. Savour his talent while he's still making movies.

Felix Bush (Duvall) has lived on his own, separate for the community, for 40 years. He is reviled by the townsfolk. Many stories are told about terrible deeds he did in his younger years. Bush, sensing his death is near, wants to finally tell his story.

Duvall shines as a master carpenter who's haunted by something that happened decades earlier. He's cranky, witty, compassionate, independent and stubborn.

2. Get Low offers another great role for Bill Murray. The former Saturday Night Live star has made so many great films since the early 1990s such as Groundhog Day, Rushmore and Quick Change. Here, he's Frank Quinn, the booze-loving owner of a funeral home who's in danger of closing shop because nobody's dying.

"What do you do when people won't die?" Quinn laments.
"It's them or us."


When he learns Bush is packing a serious bundled ball of cash, he's eager to get the old man's business.

Quinn isn't a shady player. He follows Bush's requests to the letter to give him the send off he wants.

Murray gets a few very solid one-liners, but his funeral director is also haunted by a failed marriage and the acknowledgement he doesn't know what it's like to have a family.

One of these roles eventually has to earn Murray an Academy Award nomination. Murray is a treat to watch.

3. Get Low stars Sissy Spacek. I think the last film I saw with this American actress was Oliver Stone's JFK. She starred as the wife of Jim Garrison (Kevin Costner).


As Matte Darrow, Spacek is Bush's old flame. She returns to town after her husband's death, but soon learns some disturbing news about Bush and another member of her family.

Darrow's emotions dealing with her old flame from rage and sadness to warmth and admiration.

4. Get Low is a promising feature debut from director Aaron Schneider. He was director of photography for Kiss the Girls.

Get Low is a solid drama with some very funny, and touching, moments. It's well worth a watch.

RATING: 9/10

FUN FACTS: Bill Cobbs, who appears as Rev. Charlie Jackson, made his film debut in the original version of The Taking of Pelham One Two Three. In 2011, he appeared in The Muppets.

A second preacher in Get Low, Rev. Gus Horton, is played by Gerald McRaney. He was Rick Simon on the CBS detective show, Simon and Simon, that ran from 1981 to 1989.

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