Three strangers – Martine (Kristen Stewart), Gordy (Eddie Redmayne) and ex-con Brett (William Hurt) – come together on a sultry Louisiana day. Gordy has a car but no destination in mind, Martine wants to just get out of the backwater town and Brett hopes to start his life over, this time for the good. This begins a road trip that will evoke change and maturity in the younger folk and, maybe, salvation and a home, for Brett, with his estranged wife, May (Maria Bello), in “The Yellow Handkerchief.”
This is the kind of road movie that you have seen many times before. Director Udayan Prasad gives us a routine combo of road trip, coming of age story and getting a second chance. The tiny ensemble of actors do a solid job in their roles but the material is slow paced with little action or crisis involved. William Hurt is soulful and melancholy as a man who regrets his passed – he spent six years in prison for manslaughter – and hopes to rectify past wrongs with May. Kristen Stewart is okay as Martine but Brit actor Eddie Redmayne is superior as Gordy, capturing the soft drawl of a Louisianan convincingly. Maria Bello is merely an object around which Brett can wrap his hopes.
Techs are average as is the direction and script, by Erin Dignam from the Pete Hamill story, is stodgy. “The Yellow Handkerchief” has the feel of a made-for-TV film and that is probably where it belongs. I give it a C.
Laura did not see this film.
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