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Article

Half Nelson

Posted on

Adam Bell

Half Nelson

type:
Movie
Current Status:
In Season
mpaa:
R
runtime:
107 minutes
Limited Release Date:
08/11/06
performer:
Shareeka Epps, Ryan Gosling, Anthony Mackie
director:
Ryan Fleck
distributor:
THINKFilm
author:
Anna Boden, Ryan Fleck
genre:
Drama

We gave it an A

White teacher (Ryan Gosling) saves urban youth. It’s a Hollywood cliché, but in Half Nelson, when a student (Shareeka Epps) catches Mr. Dunne smoking crack in the girls’ locker room, the two are irrevocably entangled in each other’s precarious lives. EXTRAS Gosling’s vulnerable turn (and Oscar nom) solidifies him as a major dramatic talent, though he lightens up in a series of outtakes punctuated by goofy thumbs-ups. ”Gowanus, Brooklyn,” the 19-minute short (starring Epps) that inspired Nelson, would’ve been nice extra credit, but its absence is this DVD’s only demerit. A