Screenwriter Barry Berman (Benny & Joon) makes his directorial debut with this thoughtful tale of a prodigal daughter returning home to a southern hamlet. Tyree (April Grace) is a cabbie and single mother in Washington, D.C.; when her 11-year-old son gets roped into a holdup and shoots a Jewish store owner (Burt Reynolds), she seizes both of them and drives to Waterproof, Louisiana, to seek refuge with her God-fearing family. Berman, who also wrote the script, captures the languid tempo of life in a small southern town, meticulously pacing his story as the family members--and their unexpected guest--come to terms with their past. The film has its share of stylistic glitches, including some illogical crosscutting and a music-heavy sound track, but its ensemble acting more than compensates, especially Grace as the bitter but vulnerable cabbie and Reynolds as a lonely curmudgeon who gets a new lease on life. Berman will attend the screening; presented by the Black Harvest International Film and Video Festival. Film Center, Art Institute, Columbus Drive at Jackson, Saturday, August 8, 8:00, 312-443-3737. --Ted Shen
Art accompanying story in printed newspaper (not available in this archive): film still.