Entertainment Weekly

Subscribe

Stay Connected

Subscribe

Advertise With Us

Learn More

Skip to content
Emmys 2017
Every unforgettable moment, every gorgeous dress.Click here

Speedbumps

Levity

Posted on

Levity, Billy Bob Thornton
Levity: Jonathan Wenk

Levity

type:
Movie
Current Status:
In Season
mpaa:
R
runtime:
100 minutes
Limited Release Date:
04/04/03
performer:
Kirsten Dunst, Morgan Freeman, Holly Hunter, Billy Bob Thornton, Dorian Harewood
director:
Ed Solomon
distributor:
Sony Pictures Classics
author:
Ed Solomon
genre:
Drama

We gave it a D+

Having banked success as a comedy screenwriter, Ed Solomon (”Men in Black”) eschews all that useless hilarity in his directing debut. Levity, from his own script, is gray, depressive, and intimacy-averse. And so are the lank, shoulder-length hairdo and zombie demeanor affected by Billy Bob Thornton as Manuel Jordan, a man released from prison some two decades after killing a convenience-store clerk in a botched robbery.

Desperate for redemption but convinced he doesn’t deserve it (so very ”Monster’s Ball Redux”), Manuel returns to the scene of the crime, establishing a relationship with various other hurting souls in the area, among them Holly Hunter as his victim’s sad sister, Morgan Freeman as a tormented preacher, and Kirsten Dunst as a self-destructive club kid. One could, I suppose, read mysteries of atonement into this stern tale. But for what sin? Surely not for cowriting ”Bill & Ted’s Excellent Adventure.”