Spring 2006 Edge series
Sunday, April 2, 2006 at 4:00pm
Sunday, April 2, 2006 at 7:00pm
Rated NR ·
Giving an art-film aesthetic to a touching family drama, director Phil Morrison and screenwriter Angus MacLachlan present their first feature, which was shot in their hometown of Winston-Salem, North Carolina. The film is set in nearby Pfafftown and Pilot Mountain, and location is itself a character in the film as long sequences of soundless photography show rows of houses, or rooms in a house, or stretches of farmland—capturing the essence of this area of the South.
Successful, cosmopolitan, and adorable Chicago couple Madeleine (Embeth Davidtz) and George (Alessandro Nivola) meet at a fancy art auction where she is working as a dealer, and they are married six months later. Madeleine is recruiting an outsider artist, and she travels to rural North Carolina to meet him. George accompanies her, as he is originally from Pfafftown, and though it has been three years since he visited home, Madeleine insists on meeting his family. When she does, she finds herself in a world totally different from her own, and sees a new side of her husband. His mother Peg (Celia Weston) and father Eugene (Scott Wilson) are quiet homebodies who aren’t sure what to make of Madeleine’s sophisticated career and lilting British accent. George’s deadbeat brother Johnny (Ben McKenzie) never finished high school, and lives at home with his young wife Ashley (Amy Adams), who is naive and bubbly—and very pregnant. While the family’s simplicity, traditional values, and religion make them suspicious of Madeleine, Ashley is the one bright-eyed spirit who is happy to have Madeleine as a sister-in-law and celebrates her marriage to George. Junebug is an effecting film that sheds light both on the always-surprising nature of in-laws, and the unique culture of the South.