Down in the Valley (R)

Drama 114 May 5, 2006
By Bill Gallo
The protagonist of David Jacobson's ambitious psychological thriller is an out-of-time, out-of-place cowboy (the amazing Edward Norton) who conducts himself with the solemn dignity of Wyatt Earp or Shane. Harlan Carruthers' courtly charm and poetic melancholy intrigue a rebellious and utterly contemporary Valley Girl named Tobe (Evan Rachel Wood). But by the time she realizes that her heartthrob is as crazy as a herd of cattle on loco weed, gunplay has come into the picture and Harlan has begun to look a lot like our old New York cabbie pal Travis Bickle. The film's a bit overwrought and schematic in places, but Norton's beautifully drawn and richly nuanced performance as a psychotic dreamer we can't help falling for wins the day. With David Morse as the girl's suspicious father and Rory Culkin as her vulnerable little brother.
David Jacobson Edward Norton, Evan Rachel Wood, David Morse, Rory Culkin, Bruce Dern, Ellen Burstyn, Muse Watson, John Diehl, Kat Dennings, Hunter Parrish David Jacobson David Jacobson, Stavros Merjos, Bill Migliore, Edward Norton. Adam Rosenfelt ThinkFilm

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