CinemaDave (cinemadave) wrote,

"Still Mine" is a Good film

I've been waiting seven months to write about **Still Mine,** a simple and beautiful film that screened at both the **Miami International Film Festival** and the **Palm Beach International Film Festival** Well acted, **Still Mine** quietly rides the emotional roller coaster from sadness to joy with understated dignity.

"Age is an abstraction, not a straight jacket," Craig Morrison (James Cromwell) says. In his eighties, Craig proves this theory by living an independent life on his farm in Canada. His wife of many decades, Irene (Genevieve Bujold) has been a loyal and supportive wife, but is now facing the onset of dementia. When she is injured in a fall, Craig decides to build an ergonomic-friendly home on his own land.

Despite his knowledge and experience in construction, Craig's action run afoul with government burrreaucrats, who are upset that he is not pulling permits and waiting for building inspectors to show up. **Still Mine** is a universal story that echoes August Strindberg's play **An Enemy of the People** and the writings of Henry David Thoreau. **Still Mine** is also a love story that will attract Nicholas Sparks' fans.

Based on a true story, writer-director Michael McGowan said of his film,
"**Still Mine** is based on personal experience, it is not a documentary. I didn't want to sugar coat it, but I wanted authenticity. Craig is not a saint, but he was responsible for his own fate."

McGowan talked about working with a veteran actor like James Cromwell,
"Collaborator, Strong presence is a great way. His best interest made the film better and we had no disagreement." "Michael had my back," Cromwell added.

This collaboration was never more apparent than a brief outdoor shower scene in the buff. The follow up scene involved intimate love scene with Cromwell and his costar Genevieve Bujold, who was reluctant to do a nude scene. As McGowan said, "She changed her mind when she saw that the crew as not gawking during the shower scene. Her scene was shot towards the end of production and it was comfortable. On the day of the shoot, the scene was vulnerable and intimate, she understood that and embraced it. In the end, she was happy she did it."

Cromwell was introduced to the public four decades ago in the television show, **All in the Family.** He was worked steadily with 167 credits in both television and film, including such classics as **L.A. Confidential,** "The Green Mile,** **The Artist** and **Babe,** a life changing motion picture that earned Cromwell his only Oscar nomination, thus far.

Cromwell says of this experience,
"I did not want to do the film, the character only had sixteen lines, but it was a trip to Australia."

For those who have seen **Babe** with an audience, tears are shed when Cromwell's Farmer Hoggett says, "That will do pig, that will do." Cromwell said, "I never paid attention in the past, but this time I looked in the lens and I saw the reflection of this person. I looked at the pig and I looked up and saw my father. When I said the line - my Dad was talking to me."

In many ways, **Still Mine** reconnected me with lessons from my father
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