T. J.’s (Devin Brochu) mother recently died and ever since he’s been lost. His father Paul (Rainn Wilson) has deeply withdrawn into his depression, his grandmother (Piper Laurie) is trying her best to take care of them, but isn’t really capable of that anymore. On one of T. J.’s forays into the city (which often lead him to the car wreck his mother died in), he runs into Hesher (Joseph Gordon-Levitt), a smoking, cursing, aggressive mess, who follows T. J. home and moves in with him and his family. And maybe Hesher is just what they all need.
The movie wasn’t mindblowingly good, but it was nice and I enjoyed it. Admittedly, mostly for Joseph Gordon-Levitt, but also for its sense of humor.
Joseph Gordon-Levitt was brilliant. I mean, he was lucky with his character, because Hesher was really well-written. My parents used to work with kids like him and it felt absolutely realistic. He could have fitted right into their foster home.
Devin Brochu was very capable for a boy his age. Natalie Portman was good, too. But her role was a lot less flashy (and a little less well-written, too) than Gordon-Levitt’s and he just held my attention much more.
The story was nice, if completely predictable. But that didn’t take away from its impact. It’s a good story, that’s why it’s told so often. You know exactly where it’s heading. And like rereading a favorite book and revelling in knowing what’s coming next.
That’s not to say that the film is perfect. The morale of its story was a little too preachy, losing its depth in it. But it has a good cast and it will make you laugh. Sometimes that is all you need of a film.
Summarising: Very enjoyable.