Beautiful Boy

Amazon/Plan B (2018) 120 min. R 

Director: Felix Van Groeningen 

Screenplay: Luke Davies & Felix Van Groeningen based on Beautiful Boy: A Father’s Journey through His Son’s Addiction by David Sheff & Tweak: Growing Up on Methamphetamines by Nic Sheff

Cinematography: Ruben Impens; Editing: Nico Leunen; Production Design: Ethan Tobman; Art Direction: Patrick M. Sullivan Jr.; Costumes: Emma Potter

Stars: Steve Carell (David Sheff), Timothée Chalamet (Nic Sheff), Maura Tierney (Karen Barbour), Amy Ryan (Vicki Sheff), Kaitlyn Dever (Lauren), Andre Royo (Spencer), Stefanie Scott (Julia), Amy Forsythe (Diane), Jack Dylan Grazer (Nic Scheff at 12), Timothy Hutton (Dr. Brown)

Critical response to it has ranged from lukewarm to rapturous, and there were high hopes built into Beautiful Boy prior to release. It seemed like surefire stuff. The story was timely, given the nation’s ongoing opioid epidemic, and it was expected to be a major Oscar player during awards season. But despite respectable reviews, it has hit theaters with little fanfare, doing only modest business.

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Foxcatcher

fcSony Classics (2014) 134 min. R

Director: Bennett Miller

Screenplay: E. Max Frye & Dan Futterman

Cinematography: Greig Fraser; Editing: Jay Cassidy, Stuart Levy & Conor O’Neill

Production Design: Jess Gonchor; Set Decoration: Kathy Lucas

Costumes: Kasia Walicka-Maimone

Score: Rob Simonsen

Stars: Steve Carell (John E. du Pont), Channing Tatum (Mark Schultz), Mark Ruffalo (Dave Schultz), Vanessa Redgrave (Jean du Pont), Sienna Miller (Nancy Schultz), Anthony Michael Hall (Jack), Guy Boyd (Henry Beck), Brett Rice (Fred Cole)

Maybe I’ve watched one too many paranormal programs but I find it nearly impossible to separate in my mind the horrors said to haunt Fox Hollow Farm from what lies in store for the unsuspecting young men lured to Foxcatcher Farms, the du Pont family estate in director Bennett Miller’s new movie. Both true life stories seem subliminally intended to point up near identical morals regarding the fate that invariably befalls the sinful who are tempted into a life of drugs and sexual promiscuity.

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