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Come Early Morning

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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

(Drama/Romance) Lucy is a 30-something woman who keeps waking up with a stiff hangover and a guy she doesn't even want to look at. If coming to grips with why she keeps repeating this pattern isn't enough, Lucy also begins to realize that she needs to get in touch with her familial past and, more importantly, with the person she has become.


Come Early Morning comes as a mid-afternoon career correction for Ashley Judd, an actress oft dissed in the years since her fresh, breakout performance in the indie gem Ruby in Paradise. No mystery there: what other lovely and talented woman has appeared in such a string of crummy serial-killer movies? By redemptive contrast, Come Early Morning suggests a de facto sequel to Ruby 13 years down the road. Again Judd limpidly portrays a young Southern woman, Lucy, trying to get free of a debilitating heritage--dysfunctional family on every side--and find her way to some kind of contentment. Lucy makes more bad decisions than Ruby did. For her, early morning isn't so much a new day as the hour when she faces waking up with one more guy she couldn't care less about. She plans it that way, because commitment is something she flees with grim resolve. But she also knows that the program isn't working for her.

The writing-directing debut of another offbeat actress, Joey Lauren Adams (Chasing Amy), this is a beautifully observed film, free of condescension toward its Arkansas folk, with an appreciative eye for the plain beauties of small-town life and semi-rural roads, and a sharp ear for three-cushion dialogue. "Did I miss Easter?" Lucy's housemate quietly cracks when she finds Lucy dressed for Sunday-go-to-meetin'; Lucy's trying to reconnect with her estranged dad (a magical, almost wordless performance by the wonderful Scott Wilson), who's started attending "a new holy-roller church." She also meets a newcomer (Jeffrey Donovan, excellent) who ought to be Mr. Right ... but nothing quite plays out according to formulaic expectation in this movie--among the most satisfying of 2006, which most people are going to have to discover on DVD. --Richard T. Jameson

Special Features


Product Details

  • Actors: Ashley Judd, Jeffrey Donovan, Tim Blake Nelson, Jason T. Davis, Richard Lee Crow
  • Directors: Joey Lauren Adams
  • Writers: Joey Lauren Adams
  • Producers: Ali Abouomar, Athena Ashburn, D. Scott Lumpkin, Dan Etheridge, Daniel Grodnik
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Color, Subtitled, Widescreen, NTSC
  • Language: English (Dolby Digital 5.1)
  • Subtitles: Spanish
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.66:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: R (Restricted)
  • Studio: Weinstein Company
  • DVD Release Date: March 20, 2007
  • Run Time: 97 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (53 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #47,299 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Come Early Morning" on IMDb

Customer Reviews

She blames her distant father.
Michelle Polk
Actually, the movie was so vague about pretty much everything that the viewer could not really and truly understand what is going on between the different characters.
Morrigan Alexandros
I think that the acting of the main characters is very good.
Michael P.

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

36 of 38 people found the following review helpful By MICHAEL ACUNA on November 21, 2006
Format: DVD
Lucy Fowler sleeps around, has big issues with her father, hasn't kissed a man since High School without being drunk and generally thinks little of herself or her well being but manages to be a crack cement contractor respected by her peers...which I like and which would not have occurred had a man written and/or directed this film: who in this case is actress Joey Lauren Adams ("Chasing Amy").

Ashley Judd plays Lucy like a woman who has long ago given up the search for Mr. Right and is now only looking for someone with whom to spend the night and a lot of men are more than happy to accommodate her. But she remains empty, angry and yet strangely passive and submissive when it comes to her needy relatives who primarily use her to chauffeur them around and referee their arguments.

Then Cal Percell (Jeffrey Donovan) comes along: new in town, able to look beyond Lucy's obvious faults, honorable, upstanding yet edgy and just a good all around guy. Of course, Lucy is initially attracted and naturally does everything that she can to ruin their relationship.

Writer/Director Adams knows of what she writes and directs here. It is obvious that Lucy is close to her heart and "Come Early Morning" as a result is thoughtful, remarkably open-minded, modern and emotionally meaningful.
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21 of 22 people found the following review helpful By Grady Harp HALL OF FAMETOP 100 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on April 12, 2007
Format: DVD
COME EARLY MORNING marks the writing and directing debut of Joey Lauren Adams who elects to share a bit of her birthplace atmosphere in Arkansas and while the story is sound and the writing evocative of the personal turmoil of little towns populated by good but bored people, there is nothing new here. But just the opportunity to see gifted actress Ashley Judd strut her stuff is reason enough to watch this little film and makes us wonder where has she been since her 2004 stint in 'De-Lovely'. She is just too fine an actress not to be given more beefy roles.

Lucy Fowler (Judd) lives in a little Arkansas town, a successful contractor with boss Owen Allen (Stacy Keach, another underused fine actor), but a woman without a firm attachment to her fragmented family: her shy and sequestered father (Scott Wilson) has returned to town where he hides in alcohol and steps out only for Holy Roller church services; her grandmothers Doll (Candyce Hinkle) is unstable and keeps to herself and Nana (Diane Ladd) remains in a mutually abusive marriage; and her uncle Tim (Tim Blake Nelson) who is the only stalwart member of the clan. Lucy lives with her friend Kim (Laura Prepon) who understands Lucy's shortcomings: unable to form relationships, Lucy spends her weekends getting drunk at the local tavern and sleeping with anonymous men whom she deserts a dawn.

But things change when Lucy encounters Cal Percell (Jeffrey Donovan) who provides her with the first semblance of normalcy in her relationships with men, a frightening new step she abuses by entering into her drinking mode again. Lucy begins to make changes in her view of her family, her fear of being the mirror image of her father, in her work, and in the way she views men.
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21 of 23 people found the following review helpful By H. S. Wedekind VINE VOICE on April 5, 2007
Format: DVD
Initially, I was drawn into this small movie and wanted to learn more about Lucy (Ashley Judd) and why she was so self-destructive. She is a strong-willed woman in her 30s who wants to be loved, but seeks out men who don't qualify as anything more than one-night-stands. Lucy works hard in the construction business by day and then transforms into a barfly at night. She does a lot of drinking (this movie is also part info-mercial for a certain light beer) and sleeping around with nameless guys she meets when she's drunk. There's also a side story about a sick dog she takes home that was written into the script for some unknown reason. Eventually, Lucy meets Cal, a nice guy who is in love with his car, and struggles to avoid getting too involved with him. She begins to feel something for Cal, until she senses he wants more than she is willing to give, and then she reverts back to drinking and promiscuity and turns him away. This was the part that didn't quite make this an enjoyable romantic movie for me. Lucy is a very attractive woman (even without makeup and uncombed hair) and has a "girl-next-door" innocence...until she becomes a foul-mouthed slut after drinking to excess. Flip-flop personality aside, I was somewhat drawn to her. I won't go into the other characters in the story who happen to be her dysfunctional family. They were generally unhappy and there was a connection between them and Lucy's dark side. It was inferred that she acted the way she did because of her father's drinking and womanizing past. I have to say that I was surprised this movie was praised so highly by many critics. I expected more and was left at the end of it with a feeling of "Is that all there is?"
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16 of 18 people found the following review helpful By J. SHARP on March 23, 2007
Format: DVD
Even though all the critics loved Ashley Judd's performance in "Come Early Morning" (and she even had some support for an Oscar nomination in 2006), others kept harping about how she has wasted her formidable talents in a flood of serial-killer genre movies. Well, she was in a total of three movies that involved serial killers and in one of those her scene wasn't used in the final film. The only reason she gets pegged as Thriller Chick is because those are the only films a mass audience has bothered to watch.

Thanks to nonexistent media saturation, odds are that they'll miss this independent delight, too. Or if they do watch it, they'll hate it because of the bait-and-switch packaging it's received in its DVD release. The cover promises a light and airy, tied-up-in-a-neat-bow-at-the-end, rom-com confection that is miles removed from the scruffy, minimalist, starkly honest, fair-minded, and open-ended slice of semi-rural life that is contained inside. If you need a resolution to all plot threads and relationships at the end of a movie, be forewarned.

I love Ashley's work here. Adams' freshman directorial effort has a few rough edges but that's okay. Just watch it.
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