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GARDEN STATE by Zach Braff

Garden StateAfter ten years Andrew Largeman (Zach Braff – excellent) returns home for the funeral of his mother. He has been on Lithium and other anti-depressants for ten years and feels disconnected from life. Andrew avoids contact with his father (Ian Holm) – who is a psychiatrist and has prescribed his medications – and hangs out with the bunch of losers his old high-school friends have become – Mark the gravedigger (Peter Sarsgaard – excellent), Tim the waiter in knight’s armor, Albert who invented ‘silent velcro’ and does nothing at all. And he meets Sam (Nathalie Portman – forget Padme Amidala, Nathalie can act!), a girl with a tendency to shamelessly lie (and regret it later) – and the will to live. ‘Taking a holiday’ from his medication, Andrew discovers his feelings after ten years of sleepwalking through his own life, and falls in love with Sam.
Then comes the time for Andrew to return to his life as a hopeless actor (and waiter) …

No explosions. No slo-mo violence. No car chases. If you are out for an evening of fast and easy pleasure, then wait until you’re in the right mood for this movie. When you ever felt disconnected from everything around you – and yourself, been lonely and like you lost home forever, then you will be able to connect to Andrew Largeman and this movie. Zach Braff – director, screenwriter and lead actor – defines the feeling of a generation with GARDEN STATE; he shows ‘real’ people with ‘real’ problems and ‘real’ feelings (or the lack of them), with just the right dose of magic moments: in the morning after a party, Andrew wakes up and beholds a knight in shining armor; Andrew, Sam and Mark discover a bottomless chasm where a shopping mall should have been built after an endless odyssey, and they meet Albert the guardian of the abyss who lives there with his family, in a wooden ship, and tells them he secretly explores the infinite abyss at night.
And it’s Albert who delivers the ultimate line of dialogue after the friends say goodbye and Andrew wishes him ‘good luck exploring the infinite abyss’. Looking into Andrew’s eyes, he bids farewell with a heartfelt ‘Thanks. Hey, you too’

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