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Youth in Oregon

USA, English, 105 mins

  • Director: Joel David Moore
  • Writer: Andrew Eisen
  • Producer: Sirad Balducci; Joey Carey

CGiii Comment

A film that could have/should have struck a chord with the heartstrings...but, it didn't.

A film that screams for sentimentality...but, defiantly refuses to go down that particular street.

The result...a road movie (of sorts) with two flat tyres.

Frank Langella's Raymond is dying and wants to end his life on his own terms...however, he is a vile old codger who invokes absolutely no empathy...you could easily imagine a small queue forming by those who want to assist in his assisted suicide. But...no, his family are horrified...but, inexplicably, they decide to drive him to Oregon where he can legally pop-his-clogs...via his estranged gay [Mormon] son...via his college drop-out grandson. These two additional voices bring a conflict...they agree with his decision. Holy Moses!

Communication is not the key to this film, if there had been just a smidgen...it would have been a far different and better film.

There is a glimpse of what could have been...when Raymond visits an old friend who is ending his life on the same terms...it's a tender moment in the film. Sadly, the only tender moment.

Erroneously, familial dysfunction is the crux of this film...when it should have been death with dignity...a major over-sight by both writer and director...when Raymond actually shows his tender side...it's just a little too late to matter...as the mismanaged ending duly confirms!

A film that desperately needed to exude warmth...leaves you feeling rather cold and disappointed.


The(ir) Blurb...

When 79-year-old curmudgeon Raymond (Frank Langella) makes arrangements to be euthanized in Oregon, his family refuses to accept his decision. But when another family emergency arises, Raymond's daughter Kate (Christina Applegate) turns to her husband Brian (Billy Crudup) for a little help. So Brian reluctantly volunteers to drive the cantankerous Raymond and his wine-loving wife Estelle (Mary Kay Place) three thousand miles to Oregon. Determined to change the old man's mind before they reach the Beaver State, it becomes quickly apparent to Brian that convincing your father-in-law to keep living when he's ready to check out is no simple task.

Cast & Characters

Frank Langella as Raymond;
Billy Crudup as Brian;
Christina Applegate as Kate;
Mary Kay Place as Estelle;
Josh Lucas as Danny;
Nicola Peltz as Annie;
Alex Shaffer as Nick;
Maryann Plunkett as Maryanne;
Robert Hogan as Peter;
Keenan Jolliff as Colt;
James Murtaugh as Dr. Feldstein;
Michael Godere as Tom;
Geoffrey Owens as Dr. Roma;
Aaron Yoo as Motel Clerk;
Ann Harada as Compassionate Aide

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