Broken Roads (NR)

Drama December 14, 2012
By Chuck Wilson
What to do about Broken Roads? This debut feature from writer-director Justin Chambers is well written and passionately performed. The cinematography, by newcomer Michael Moghaddam, is lovely. All good stuff, but the movie is two and a half hours long, which is just plain crazy. After his mother is killed in a car crash, 17-year-old Aldo (Aidan Bristow), who never knew his father, moves to the country to live with his grandmother, known as Wallace (Sally Kirkland). Haunted by flashbacks to the accident, a mad-at-the-world Aldo rebuffs his grandmother's attempts at connection. In his room, he often weeps, which might be laughable if Bristow weren't so good at it. Gradually, shared grief unites Aldo and Wallace, and a chilled-out Aldo finally realizes that the beautiful classmate (Shoshana Bush) who keeps visiting is flirting with him. There are no surprises in these events or in what follows, but the three principals--grounded by the indomitable Kirkland-- act their fool heads off to potent effect. The filmmaker is clearly in love with them and, perhaps, with his own words, which must be why he couldn't stop shooting-- and why, apparently, common sense flew out the window when it came time to whittle it all down to size.
Justin Chambers Sally Kirkland, Aidan Bristow, Shoshana Bush, Rolonda Watts, Ross Marquand, Lisa Glass, Terrell Tilford, Maryfrances Careccia, Jack Millard, Katrin Babou Justin Chambers Justin Chambers, Karina Diaz, Jimmy Gelhaar, Michael Butlerr, John Williams


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