Thursday, March 18, 2021


Available now from Lesflicks VOD...

Rain Beau's End--Hannah is the mayor of a small midwestern town; her partner Jules runs a coffee shop. They adopt a 4-year-old named Beau, and soon learn that he has a genetic condition which predisposes him to violence.

We glimpse Beau, just barely, near the beginning of the film, mostly just as a pair of boots with dinosaurs on them. Thereafter he's kept offstage, as the film focuses on what raising him does to his moms, their lives, their relationships over the next decade and a half. The career-minded Hannah stays distant and lets Jules get down in the emotional trenches with Beau.

There's a dovetailing plot twist toward the end that could be regarded as contrived, although stranger things have certainly happened in real life. Otherwise I found this indie tearjerker, directed by Tracey Wren from a script by Jennifer Cooney and Joe Orlandino, believable and poignant. It has the polished surface of, say, a Hallmark movie, but in its low-key, leisurely way it's a tough, honest and unsentimental take on parenting, and the performances of Janelle Snow as Hannah and Amanda Powell as Jules are moving.

Ed Asner and Sean Young are briefly shooed past the camera, as Hannah's gruff old bigot of a father and as her snarky straight friend, respectively, probably as much to give the movie some name-player credibility as for any pressing dramatic reason. Both are good, but even without them Rain Beau's End is authentic and engrossing.

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