Monday, September 29, 2008

Snow Cake (2006)

Sigourney Weaver and Alan Rickman do yeoman's work in this modest British-Canadian co-production. Weaver had a daunting challenge: to convincingly portray a high functioning autistic adult, and as someone who has a similarly afflicted family member, I can say she comes very close to pulling it off. However, Rickman's reactions are the real acting gold in this movie. It was all too real to see him go from stunned silence when he first meets Weaver, to the grudging, almost comical acceptance of her behavior. Rickman then becomes the old hand, and watches with bemusement as other people react to Weaver for the first time and are thrown off-balance in the process. Unfortunately, there is way too much rubbish going on in this movie. Much is made of Rickman's over-the-top backstory and there is a sexual catharsis subplot and all of it just feels like filler. Despite the weaknesses, Snow Cake is well worth watching, especially if you have ever had to deal with borderline loved ones. Be sure to check out the bonus material. The deleted scenes will give you insight into alternative, and frankly better, ways the story could have been handled.


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