Subject: I have found a DVD that I think you would enjoy
|What Alice Found|
Actors: Emily Grace, Judith Ivey, Bill Raymond, Jane Lincoln Taylor, Justin Parkinson
Director: A. Dean Bell
Genres: Drama, Mystery & Suspense
A small town girl meets up with a middle-aged retired couple on the road and soon gets caught up in a world she never imagined.
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El Lagarto | Sandown, NH | 10/08/2006
(4 out of 5 stars)
"What Alice Found is Spartan, it breaks the craft of filmmaking down into its most basic elements and executes well on every one. There are no flaming helicopters to be found here, or big name stars, nowhere to hide. Instead of distractions you find a well-conceived script, excellent acting, and subtle moral choices that never invite cheap, easy answers.
The entire cast of the picture could, and does, fit into an RV - it's a three-person ensemble piece. Digital photography gives What Alice Found a scruffy, high school project feeling that is perfectly in step with the protagonist's innocence and the cheesy ambience of truck stop hooking. In short, writer/director Dean Bell has turned drawbacks into allies.
The simple plot supports a complex character study. Alice, played admirably by newcomer Emily Grace, is running away from home to visit a friend in Florida. Brief flashbacks are used effectively to inform this decision, and help us understand her background. On the road she is befriended, unless "Shanghaied" is a better word, by a couple that roams truck stops in their mobile brothel RV. Part pimps and part surrogate parents, they quickly fold Alice into their world. Though she stays naive, we track her downward spiral by the way she looks.
The showcase performance here is by Judith Ivey, her Sandra manages to convey a broad range of emotions, and motives, without ever once seeming forced. She knows a lot, and she's quick to instruct Alice in the ways of the world, all she's discovered since she escaped Paducah, Kentucky. Through the course of the film we come to understand that neither Alice nor Sandra are completely innocent or guilty, and despite the unkind conditions, an important bond of understanding has been formed.
That is the greatest strength of What Alice Found. Had it been about an innocent waif victimized by horrid road vagabonds, it would have been two-dimensional. As it is, there's real depth. Highly recommended."
You don't get Something for Nothing
U2girl | St. Louis, MO United States | 03/05/2006
(3 out of 5 stars)
"I got this movie because Amazon recommended it based on some other movie that I watched. I am not sure what movie that was or how it tied to this one, but I guess that is besides the point. This movie is about a girl that is trying to get away from the town she grew up in like her girlfriend that left to go to college, but she doesn't have it so easy. She ended up stealing from her boss in order to have some money. Once she gets on the road in her beat up Escort, her car has problems and she runs into Sandra and Bill. Because of my usual pessimistic attitude, I was immediately suspicious of this couple. They were just tooo nice. That never bodes well with me.
Anyways, it is a pretty good film. It was very real in the sense that alot of girls may run away or somehow get on the streets and are so naive thinking that someone is going to help them just because. It is a pessimistic attitude, but more than likely if someone comes out of nowhere to help you, normally there is a large price to pay. You have to think about if what you are running away from is really worth the price you will pay for help from strangers. Alice found out.
This movie is not for children, so don't watch it with your little ones. The Sandra character was a mixed bag, she was just so doggone sweet and understanding that you just don't really know how to feel about her. Even though I did like the film, I am not sure if/when I would watch it again. I did find the movie interesting and I thought the acting was great. I also thought they did a good job of setting the characters up so that you could actually feel during the movie. Good job!"
Worthwhile small film
Heather Lowe | Corning NY | 12/21/2004
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Judith Ivey's performance is outstanding in this well-written and nicely directed independent movie. Although this is a small-budget film, with all the drawbacks that implies, it's still very much worth seeing. The characters are engaging and complex, and you come to care deeply what will happen to them, especially Alice.
I'll look forward to seeing more from director Dean Bell, and will certainly watch for Judith Ivey in future roles. She should have won an Oscar for this performance."
A small diamond
John Falicki | Moraga, CA United States | 04/20/2006
(5 out of 5 stars)
"A beautiful, poignant movie that surprised me. Small, yes, but strangely moving and satisfying after starting out slow. Surprisingly good performances all around from people who don't look like they're professional actors, most of them."