Subject: I have found a DVD that I think you would enjoy
Actors: Sally Field, Ben Chaplin, Tom Cavanagh, Julianne Nicholson, Clea DuVall
Director: Steve Stockman
Genres: Comedy, Drama
No Description Available. Genre: Feature Film-Drama Rating: R Release Date: 18-SEP-2007 Media Type: DVD
Similarly Requested DVDs
Member Movie Reviews
KELLY B. from GLENS FALLS, NY
Reviewed on 11/12/2009...
this is a good family movie,that may help them deal with a difficilt sickness that not treatable...it gives you some thought of what the all members are going thru at a difficult time.
0 of 1 member(s) found this review helpful.
Pamela A. from WHEELING, WV
Reviewed on 4/23/2009...
This is an excellent movie! Sally Field does a superb job. Have tissues close by, although a little subtle humor is thrown in throughout. This movie is a keeper for me.
1 of 2 member(s) found this review helpful.
Sally's Field Day as a Dying Mother Surrounded by Shallow Ch
Ed Uyeshima | San Francisco, CA USA | 09/21/2007
(3 out of 5 stars)
"The humor is way too forced, superficial and well-trodden to add the well-intentioned black comedy elements this otherwise bittersweet soap opera needs, but this 2007 film offers a vanity-free Sally Field giving a powerhouse performance as Anita Bergman, the dying mother of four grown children. The movie's title refers to the amount of time her character is expected to live before succumbing to ovarian cancer. With the clock ticking, the four children gather at her North Carolina home from different parts of the country and respond differently to the imminent tragedy. Directed and written by Steve Stockman as a series of vignettes, the characterizations represent different archetypes, and the actors are left to flesh them out to some human dimension. The results of their efforts are variable.
Affecting an unrecognizable American accent, Ben Chaplin fares the poorest as eldest brother Keith, an LA-based filmmaker whose sarcastic jokes are meant to shield him from feelings of insecurity and guilt. His character has the most screen time, yet his constantly jokey facade gets in the way of any sympathy we have for him. At first, Tom Cavanaugh plays Ben, the son Anita has dubbed the responsible one, as an obnoxious yuppie workaholic who gradually reveals his fears of loss but fades in the background. As only daughter Beth, Julianne Nicholson is terrific in unconditionally embracing her role as chief caretaker given that her mother is really her best friend, for better or worse. Youngest brother Matthew is drawn in the broadest strokes as the picked-upon baby of the family, and his resentment has manifested itself with a shrewish wife whom everybody else hates.
On the sidelines is Anita's second husband of 13 years, Jim, played by James Murtagh, who glowers in resentment as her children take over their house with nary a thought in his direction. Anita's first husband and the father of her children exists as a shadowy figure in the story, and Anita - in one of many revealing videotaped excerpts - has obviously not fully come to terms with her divorce. These clips - showing Anita recorded by Keith in an earlier stage of her cancer - are used as a dramatically effective framing device for the story, and Field shows herself to be at the height of her artistry in these scenes even when the material gets mawkish. Stockman based the story on the death of his own mother in 1997, and this experience informs a lot of the moments in the film, especially the brutalizing scenes of Anita's rapid decline under hospice care.
The 2007 DVD is two-sided split between full and widescreen versions and with the extras divvied up. Stockman provides an informative commentary track accompanied periodically by Dr. Ira Byock, a physician specializing in treating those knowingly facing death. There's also a solid 23-minute making-of featurette, "Learning to Live Through Dying", and four scenes labeled deleted though truthfully only one is deleted while the other three are extended. There is a group discussion guide included in each version that provides text questions to help the viewer face the death of a loved one."
Death as an Exodus and an Epiphany
Grady Harp | Los Angeles, CA United States | 09/22/2007
(4 out of 5 stars)
"TWO WEEKS may put a lot of viewers off as it deals confrontationally with the issues of death and dying and yet finds the very human humor that always serves as a relief sidebar in stories (and life incidents) such as this. Steve Stockman wrote, directed and produced this little film and his inspiration and efforts are well served by a fine ensemble cast. It is a story about dying and the effects the finality of that event have on a family that has dispersed in different directions life.
Anita Bergman (a phenomenally effective Sally Field) is under hospice care as she faces her last days of dying from gastrointestinal cancer. Knowing that she has little time left she calls upon her four children to return home to North Carolina for goodbyes. Her children are a mixed lot: Keith (Ben Chaplin) is a Zen-influenced California man who has decided to video his mother for posterity; Barry (Thomas Cavanagh) is a workaholic who attempts to piece together time for this inconvenient disruption in his work routine; Matthew (Glenn Howerton) is the baby of the family dominated by a tactless wife whom the rest of the family detest; Emily (a luminous Julianne Nicholson) is the sole sister who has collected all the books on the dying process for her brothers' education and is the stalwart one who holds the family together. Anita divorced the children's father and remarried a quiet man Jim (James Murtaugh) who is essentially ignored or tolerated by the children. Anita shares memories, both tender and hilarious, about her life with her family, and as the hospice nurse Carol (Michael Hyatt) tenderly leads the children through the instructions regarding final care, the four bond again, become more accepting of their disparate directions, share some very funny conversations to relieve the gloom of the event, and interact more than they have since childhood. By the time of the inevitable event come each of the children and their current father have found vulnerabilities and expanded the tokens of love left to them by Anita, now able to carry out Anita's wishes with a modicum of grace and a lot of warmth.
Using the last two weeks of life as a platform for coming together provides the film ample opportunity to address many issues - marriage, children, family, religion, and individuality. The film is balanced by the superb performance of Sally Field on the one end and the wholly realized characterization by Julianne Nicholson on the other end. In many ways it is the continuity between the lives of these two women that make the story memorable. There are some fine lessons to be heard in this film, and the telling of the story is very satisfying to watch. Grady Harp, September 07"
A suprisingly good balance of comedy and drama.
Steven Hedge | Somewhere "East of Eden" | 10/15/2007
(4 out of 5 stars)
"This genre tends to be hit or miss in that it's very hard to create a credible drama with humorous elements. This one nails it quite well.
Recent endeavors into this genre have left me feeling very suspicious of them and the disastrous Running With Scissors pretty much nailed the coffin shut for me. Earlier tries that I can recall that were quite good were Terms of Endearment and Steel Magnolias. This film, Two Weeks, like the two previous mentioned films, deals with family relations and death and to my surprise handled both with great insight and realism that is laced with gallows-like humor.
The story about a dying mother, excellently portrayed by the ever reliable and incredibly youthful Sally Field, who is predominately cared for by her daughter, extremely well-played by Julianne Nicholson. The sons are invited later, during the mother's final stage of death, to come and help and pay their respects. Old jealousies, arguments, and petty issues come up more because of the tension of dealing with a dying parent than anything else, but they are all realistically handled except for the youngest brother who simply can't see the self-absorbed wife he has that grates on everyone's nerves. It's a stretch to see anything likable in her enough to encourage anyone to want to marry her. Of course, this marriage alone could simply be a rebellious act by the younger brother who feels ignored (hence the marriage to a wife that demands everyone's attention 24/7).
The two older brothers are well-played by Ben Chaplin, the oldest child, and Tom Cavanagh, the business obsessed child. I totally disagree with the director's comments noted on this product page wherein he notes that this British actor's American accent is perfect and no one can tell he's not American. Is he kidding? Did he watch his own film? Chaplin gives a terrific performance, but there is no doubt he's British. I kept waiting for the explanation in the film for this. Was he perhaps raised in Britain by his father who divorced his mother when they were young? Alas, the director chose to believe he sounds American. Cavanagh, TV's "Ed" and arthouse thriller Sublime, is nicely convincing in his role. I wish he he had both more on screen time and more roles as he is a compelling and believable actor in everything I've seen him in and he's been diverse roles since exiting his TV series.
An interesting aspect of this film is both the hospice care the dying mother and family receive and the ever constant instruction/explanation the daughter gives from her vast collection of books on dealing with the dying. It is rather educational, especially for those who have not traveled down this road before. I have experienced quite a lot of this this year when my dad passed away. Of course, I can also relate to all the family squabbling as well that went on at my dad's passing. Everyone's feelings are rather raw and even exaggerated during the death of a parent. Every little dispute and off-handed comment is blown way out of portion and everyone is seeking his or her own special validation for the pain he or she is experiencing. This film captures all of that fairly and honestly.
Although this film is highly predictable, it is very watchable and enjoyable. We understand the pain this family is experiencing, the end of life views of a dying mother, and the always unsettled disputes that arise in any family, especially larger ones. If you have ever been through a death of a parent, you will see yourself and others in this film. If you have not experienced the death of a parent yet, then you are fortunate in two ways: you still have time to reconcile with your parent(s) and see how death is both uniting and divisive. You have time to prepare for the inevitable. This is an insightful film that strikes a good balance between the drama and comedy that is within all of our lives at the time of a loved one's death."