Writer: Bob Nelson (Screenplay)
Starring: Bruce Dern, Will Forte, June Squibb, Bob Odenkirk, Stacy Keach
Plot: An aging, booze-addled father makes the trip from Montana to Nebraska with his estranged son in order to claim a million-dollar Mega Sweepstakes Marketing prize.
There may be spoilers the rest of the review
Verdict: Brilliant Comedy Drama
Story: Nebraska starts as Woody Grant (Dern) an elder man who believes he has won the Million-dollar Mega Sweepstakes and wants to travel from Montana to Nebraska to receive his prize. The problem comes where he keeps trying to walk the journey which drives his wife Kate (Squibb) and two adult kids David (Forte) and Ross (Odenkirk) crazy.
After it becomes clear he just won’t give up on this journey David agrees to travel cross country with him in a journey which will bring the two closer than they have been in David’s life. While the story continues to unfold, we learn that this trip means more than the money to Woody and as the news spreads he might have won the money people from his past come out of the woodwork trying to stake their own claim to a piece of it all.
Thoughts on Nebraska
Characters/Performance – Woody is an elderly man who just wants to know his place with the people who knew dying and his memory going, Woody just wants to go on this journey to have one last memory of something he achieved in his life. David is the younger son who is the softer of the two brothers, he sees this journey as his last chance to be with his father, learning about his past in a journey he never got to experience as a young boy. Kate is the wife of Woody who is getting tired of all the trouble Woody has been causing, you can see the love between the two as they have been spending years together through the good and bad moments.
Bruce Dern is fantastic in this role that deals with all the problems the character is dealing with. Will Forte who I only knew from comedy was also fantastic in this role with June Squibb getting nearly all of the laughs with her character’s rants.
Story – Looking at the story we see one man’s search for an extra memory before he feels he will finally lose his memory. This is a road trip movie that shows the bon between father and son can reach new levels at any age. I feel the story gives Woody a chance to look at where he grows up, where his friends from his youth are and put the past behind him once and for all.
Adventure/Comedy – The adventure the family go on while simple is a cross-country journey, we have great light-hearted comedy going on throughout the film.
Settings – The small town America setting shows how people can live full lives without getting out and when you return you can see how much you have escaped.
Final Thoughts – This is one film I was always unsure of watching, I never got any good vibes from it but this was easily one of the best I have seen from the year of release.
Overall: Brilliant drama that you can understand every moment the characters feel.
I enjoyed that one. Alert the press, we agreed! 😉