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Story

Billy Bob Thornton wrote, directed, and starred in this mesmerizing drama with haunting overtones of To Kill a Mockingbird. Thornton plays a mentally *bleep* man who has spent 20 years in a psychiatric hospital for killing his mother and her lover. Released into the community from which he came, he befriends and protects a lonely boy regularly harassed and abused by his mom's boyfriend (a terrific performance by Dwight Yoakam). The story is ultimately about sacrifice, but Thornton certainly doesn't get twinkly about it. Some of the best material concerns the hero's no-big-deal efforts to integrate into a "normal" life: working, eating fast food, earning admiration for his handyman skills, and attaining a semblance of community among other damaged souls. John Ritter has a great part as a gay shopkeeper who tries to assuage his own loneliness by spilling his guts out to Thornton's uncomprehending character. The DVD release presents the film in its original 1.85:1 widescreen aspect ratio. --Tom Keogh

DVD Features

  • Available subtitles: Spanish
  • Available Audio Tracks: English (Dolby Digital 5.1)
  • Commentary by writer/director/actor Billy Bob Thornton
  • Director's cut (22 minuets longer)
  • Bravo Profiles: Billy Bob Thornton
  • A Conversation with Billy Bob Thornton and Robert Duvall
  • A Conversation with Billy Bob Thornton
  • A Conversation with Robert Duvall
  • "The Return of Karl"
  • "On the Set" 3 part featurette
  • "Doyle's Dead" with introduction
  • Reviews
  • Number of discs: 2

Cast

Billy Bob ThorntonKarl Childers
Dwight YoakamDoyle Hargraves
J.T. WalshCharles Bushman
John RitterVaughan Cunningham
Lucas BlackFrank Wheatley
James HamptonJerry Woolridge
Robert DuvallKarl's Father
Rick DialBill Cox
Brent BriscoeScooter Hodges
Christine Renee WardMelinda
Mickey JonesMonty Johnson
Jim JarmuschFrostee Cream Boy

  • Genre: Drama Movies
  • Director: Billy Bob Thornton
  • Producer: Buena Vista
  • Length: 135 mins
  • Aspect ratio: 1.85:1
  • Theatrical Release
    North AmericaNov 27, 1996
  • Ratings
    North AmericaR
    Europe15
    AustraliaMA
  • DVD Release
    North AmericaJan 14, 2003
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