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Drama - Family

Manchester by the Sea (2017)

Duration2h 17m
RatingsUK: 15, USA: R, 
Source of storyAn original screenplay
DirectorKenneth Lonergan
Writers/ScriptKenneth Lonergan
StarringCasey Affleck, Kyle Chandler, Michelle Williams, Lucas Hedges, 
RatingsIMDb: 7.8 by 248,220 people.  Rotten Tomatoes: 96% by 350 critics.

Elevator Pitch: Lee is working as a janitor and maintenance man in a block of flats in Boston leading a pointless dull life punctuated by a bit of boozing and fighting. It turns out that in his past due to his failure to put a guard in front of his fire at home in Manchester, while he has gone out for beer, his house has burnt down killing his children.  When his brother dies he is recalled to the town to be guardian to his nephew with whom he argues constantly. The nephew will inherit the family fishing boat, he has girlfriends and is a member of a band. On the other hand, Lee has nothing, so what is the point of them moving back to Boston.

Content: There is some inference that sex has taken place or will take place but no nudity. Lee drinks a lot and fights a bit. There is distress when the house burns down and a couple of funerals. They go out in the fishing boat once or twice but don’t do any actual fishing. Lee helps his son with his romance by attempting to occupy the mother in conversation, but it does not work well. He meets with his ex-wife, now married again. 

A View: It won two important Oscars at the 2017 awards, including Casey Affleck for best actor and Kenneth Lonergan for best screenplay, plus many other awards at lesser ceremonies. It also made a lot on money on a production budget estimated to be $9 million. Rotten Tomatoes gave it 96% by 350 reviewers. I admit that it is not really my sort of film but my wife enjoyed it (I don’t know whether that is the right word). I was concerned by the fishing boat’s lack of freeboard and I did not like the pretty random flashbacks – apparently intentional. So in my view not really a watch – but that’s just me.

Additional Info: Amazon has apparently been involved in the financing of this movie hence the appearance of Jeff Besos in many of the photos.

About Victor R Gibson

Author of this site three technical books and two novels


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