Saturday 25 November 2023

Movie Review: The Trip To Bountiful (1985)

Genre: Road Trip Drama
Director: Peter Masterson
Starring: Geraldine Page, John Heard, Carlin Glynn, Rebecca De Mornay, Richard Bradford
Running Time: 108 minutes

Synopsis: In Houston of the late 1940s, the elderly Mrs. Watts (Geraldine Page) is living in a cramped two-room apartment with her son Ludie (John Heard) and daughter-in-law Jessie May (Carlin Glynn). The two women barely get along, and Mrs. Watts longs to escape the apartment and visit her tiny hometown of Bountiful one last time. With Ludie reluctant to accompany her, Mrs. Watts takes the initiative and sets off on her own, embarking on a bus ride full of memories and anticipation.

What Works Well: Horton Foote adapts his own play for the screen, and director Peter Masterson delivers a small, intimate story of nostalgia with an eye for picturesque middle-of-nowhere bus stops. An acting showcase for Geraldine Page, this warm and lyrical road trip contrasts sweet memories of home as a refuge from present hard compromises and discomforts. Rebecca De Mornay (as a fellow traveler) and Richard Bradford (as a helpful Sheriff) make small appearances.

What Does Not Work As Well: The theatrical origins are obvious, the narrative is singularly lacking in surprises, and the pacing succumbs to repetitive reminiscing about the good old days. John Heard's Ludie gets one late moment to shine, but it arrives out of nowhere. 

Conclusion: A sweet but largely inconsequential ode to the past.

All Ace Black Movie Blog reviews are here.

No comments:

Post a Comment

We welcome reader comments about this post.