A Sundance Festival special, this indie family comedy-drama was given unduly harsh treatment by critics when it was released. Starring as the long-estranged son of an emotionally distant father, Noah Wyle comes home to hi... more »s family for Thanksgiving in hopes of reconnecting with his old girlfriend, and receives unexpected results. But he's not the only one coming back. There's the brother with a cute fiancée (Hope Davis), who doesn't quite understand what all the tension is about. There's the glum sister (a hilarious Julianne Moore) who is down on love and everything else until she connects with a childhood acquaintance. And Mom (Blythe Danner) is there to referee it all. But the central conflict involves Wyle and his father (Roy Scheider in a wonderfully eccentric performance). --Marshall Fine« less
Creepy - nobody EVER discusses anything REAL ..........
foreverbooks | Northeast USA | 05/10/2004
(4 out of 5 stars)
"I've watched this movie several times - to see if I missed anything before, just to see it again, because it's mesmerising (for me, anyway), and because I'm secretly hoping that it wasn't really THAT sick ......... the acting, photography, direction were all superb - the message came across so very true to life in every way ........... and because of all that, I often watch it when it's re-run on the tube; Noah Wyle does an excellent job of portaying the son who suffered so pointedly, the betrayal that goes on in this family - and as in all (or most anyway) families - this one is affected via the trickle down of the tone set by the parents - the father - Roy Scheider - isn't just distant; he's downright mean and destructive - blurred from being discerned clearly, because of his eccentricities - although I did feel that he contrived all of those too. And Blythe Danner did an excellent job of portraying the mother who goes on for decades overlooking her husband's cruel streaks, his creepy deceits, his silence, anger, and his tone-setting refusal to tolerate open communication; in spite of all this unpleasantness in the household, and the effect this all has/had on the now grown children - I enjoy this movie because it all "hangs together" so real and true. It's hard to believe that in this day and age, that there surely are families like this - who simply never communicate openly atall - ever!"
'Ordinary People' go 'Home for the Holidays'
J. Michael Click | Fort Worth, Texas United States | 01/03/2001
(3 out of 5 stars)
"A beautifully photographed film with an incredible cast of wonderful actors ... and a very heavy-handed script about a supremely disfunctional family. The plot offers no real exposition or resolution, treating the audience as unwelcome guests who have gate-crashed a private family gathering; we interrupt a drama that has been unfolding for many years, witness the latest exchanges of unpleasantness and angst, and then are asked to leave prematurely. Too many characters are left unfully explored or developed. For example, does the mother not wonder why her oldest son knocks his father down?! What causes the youngest son to suddenly conquer his doubts concerning emotional commitment? Is there a reason for the father's nocturnal singing activities?The DVD offers an excellent anamorphic picture and remarkable sound. Worth a look just for the cast, but the main theme of a family in relationship crisis was more successfully explored in the dramatic "Ordinary People" and the comedic "Home for the Holidays" (which featured "Myth" bookshop owner Cynthia Stevenson in the role of Holly Hunter's younger sister)."
Family drama just misses greatness.
RALPH PETERS | CLOVIS, CA USA | 07/13/1998
(4 out of 5 stars)
"THE MYTH OF FINGERPRINTS follows the grand tradition of ORDINARY PEOPLE and, more recently, THE ICE STORM, in dissecting family relations, jealousies, hatreds, and closely-held secrets. While many characters and situations work, the focus ends up unclear; we are never quite sure what we're supposed to feel, as the characters themselves come across as mostly weak and not all that likeable. The actors fight gamely. Though Roy Scheider is as cold and remote as the winter setting, Blythe Danner and Noah Wyle are uniformly excellent. Overall worth watching but I look forward to director Bart Freundlich's next effort even more. END"
A great soundtrack through and through
A Music Lover | the seaside | 11/02/2001
(4 out of 5 stars)
"David Bridie and Rufus Wainright on one CD? To fans of them it is a dream. This is where i first found them both (The music really grabbed me when i watched the flick). David Bride and John Phillips are from the Aussie band "Not Drowning, Waving" and this soundtrack sounds a bit like the NDW soundtrack to "Hammers". The addition of 2 great Rufus' traditional covers and Bing Crosby keep you in visual movie mode. This very mellow and introspective music, so if that's what you like, I recommend it highly! firstname.lastname@example.org"
Dysfunctional family so real, it hurts.....
MATT | ARIZONA | 03/07/2006
(5 out of 5 stars)
"you'll recognize yourself and people you know, and it will strike an emotional chord wth you. thought provoking, intense, distant and cold. all performances are a sensation, julianne moore a standout as usual. a thanksgiving gathering gone wrong. buried and bitter feelings abound and resurface again. look elsewhere if your expecting a happy ending, this isn't that kind of movie. the father/son relationship is very sad. anger underneath the surface between them. there is a cellar scene where the father goes down and sees a family film from long ago. a birthday party for his son. this scene is very moving, showing the father how horrible he acted toward him. the look on roy scheider's face while watching the reel is heartbraking....he has no feelings at all of what he did, and why. subtle to its center, it is a good film. "