Video on Demand — January 2015

Video pick of the month


Ellar Coltrane stars as Mason, raised in Texas by his mom (a wonderful Patricia Arquette), alongside his sister Samantha (Linklater’s own daughter, Lorelei), while his dad — the director’s Before collaborator, Ethan Hawke — struggles to find his own form of maturity. Arquette’s character is a great mother but makes poor personal choices, looking for stability from a series of inappropriate men. Hawke’s character, initially masking his irresponsibility with a veneer of hipness, finds his own surprising ways of advancing through the years. And Mason? He just grows up — naturally, beautifully, and without a trace of child-actor preciousness. The actual narrative material of Boyhood is barely worth mentioning. Some of it is the stuff of TV movies — struggling single moms and abusive second dads. Other moments — a father-son conversation at a bowling alley, hanging out with friends at an abandoned house, discovering an artistic passion — are incidental scenes in other films’ larger dramas. It is the accumulation of all these moments that produces Boyhood’s deeply moving affect. (Scott Macaulay)

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