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Jayne Mansfield's Car (2012)

Billy Bob Thornton  |  R |  DVD
3.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (53 customer reviews)

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Product Details

  • Directors: Billy Bob Thornton
  • Writers: Billy Bob Thornton, Tom Epperson
  • Format: Color, NTSC, Widescreen
  • Language: English
  • Subtitles: English, Spanish
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 2.35:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: R (Restricted)
  • Studio: Anchor Bay
  • DVD Release Date: December 10, 2013
  • Run Time: 122 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (53 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B00F641OH8
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #21,670 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)

Editorial Reviews

In what critics are calling his best work as writer/director since Slingblade, Academy Awards winner Billy Bob Thornton stars – along with Oscar’s winner Robert Duvall, two-time Oscar nominee John Hurt and Golden Globe winner Kevin Bacon – in this story of fathers and sons, wars and peace, and the turbulent time that changed America forever. It’s 1969 in a small Alabama town, and the death of a quirky clan’s long-estranged wife and mother brings together two very different families for the funeral. But do the scars of the past hide differences that will tear them apart or expose truths that could lead to the most unexpected collisions of all? Robert Patrick (Walk the Line), Ray Stevenson (Dexter), Katherine LaNasa (Deception) and Frances O’Connor (The Hunter) co-star in the acclaimed comedy/drama that TwitchFilm calls “A perfect film for a lazy summer day with near-perfect performances across the board!”

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
19 of 22 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Holy Cow, It's Got Ron White! August 27, 2013
Format:Amazon Instant Video
So different from Sling Blade that you might never have realized it's Thornton again. This is as good as Sling Blade, but has a completely different perspective and much more complexity. The writers certainly exhibit an intimate knowledge of the South during this era. Duvall is wonderfully crusty and eccentric, and John Hurt provides a perfect foil. Ron White nails his performance, effectively pillorying the people he enjoys caricaturing the most. There's a lot going on in this film, and I found it to be intelligent and engrossing. Well, Thornton's no one trick pony, that much is certain.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Terrific Performances November 22, 2013
JAYNE MANSFIELD'S CAR is a film filled with many pleasures, including a host of brilliant performances and an uncanny recreation of a past time and place.

Set in 1969 rural Alabama, the multi-character story deals, in part, with how different generations of a family deal with the experience of war. In this case, it’s the wealthy, dysfunctional Caldwell clan, headed by Robert Duvall, a WWI vet, father of three sons (Robert Patrick, Kevin Bacon and Billy Bob Thornton) and a daughter (Katherine LaNasa).
The three brothers are still suffering, in different ways, from their experiences during WWII, while the daughter is trapped in a marriage with two daughters and a boorish husband.

The death of Duvall’s long estranged wife and the children’s mother forces many unspoken truths into the open. The deceased woman’s second husband (John Hurt) and his two grown kids (Ray Stevenson, Frances O’Connor) by his first wife travel from their home in England to attend her burial in her Alabama. This family has its own dysfunctional elements that spark unexpected collisions, some of them romantic, with and within the Caldwell clan.

More of a black comedy rather than a straight drama, JAYNE MANSFIELD'S CAR was co-written and directed by Billy Bob Thornton. Unfortunately, the parts (e.g. performances, individual scenes) are more effective than the film as a whole, which runs far too long and can’t really decide on an ending. Although all of the actors are superb and their scenes are well written, the overall movie might have been better served without such an abundance of intriguing characters. By eliminating three or four of them, Thornton would have wound up with a tighter, less meandering picture.

The problem is: Which characters do you cut?

The Blu-Ray disc from Anchor Bay Entertainment contains a “Behind the Scenes” featurette.

© Michael B. Druxman
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
Billy Bob Thornton, co-wrote, directed, and acts in this depiction of a military family during 1969 in Morrison Alabama. A character study, of sorts, about the diverse ways each of the family members considers their present day lives through the looking glass of their individual pasts, mainly their time spent in the military. The vast differences shown in these people culminate in the death of Naomi. She was the mother of the three boys, Jimbo (Robert Patrick), an Army man not seeing in any combat, Skip (Billy Bob Thornton), a Navy man, Carroll (Kevin Bacon), a Marine and presently a Vietnam protester, and daughter, Donna (Katherine LaNasa). Also included in the cast is Donna's husband, Neal (Ron White). He adds realistic comic relief into this familial themed and darkly comedic look into dysfunctional family life after having returned home from the wars (WWI and WWII). That isn't to say that this movie does not have its lighter moments as there are plenty.

Naomi's ex-husband, Jim Caldwell (Robert Duvall), was not the sort of person that could give her what she needed. He is very short on patience, emotion, or the display of it, and certainly, tolerance. Because she needed so much more in her life, she divorced him and moved on to remarry Kingsley Bedford (John Hurt, in a multilayered role) in England and continue her life there with his family, Phillip (Ray Stevenson), and Camilla (Francis O'Connor). Jim and Naomi's relationship isn't shown, but is spoken of often. Jim remained in Alabama raising their children to adulthood and watched them each head off into one or another part of military service. All three of the sons, along with their father, differ in their personal conclusions of wartime except for knowing that it equally changed their opinions on life.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
By thedre
Format:Amazon Instant Video|Verified Purchase
Don't miss this one. Takes it to the edge. It never lagged. It gave me space to feel, and some surprising characters extremely well thought out. If you like a writers movie, that maintains variety and steers clear of the kind of melodrama one dreads, then check this out. Radiant work by everyone, and life affirming. A lot of heart in this film. The good stuff. Billy Bob Thornton always brings the goods, either in his acting or his choice of story. I take the time to see what he's up to. So did a lot of great actors in this too....
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10 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Loved it! August 27, 2013
By Matijow
Format:Amazon Instant Video|Verified Purchase
A blast from the past dysfunctional family film. Great story line with strong acting. This film reminded me of my family and growing up in the sixties.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Relationships June 19, 2014
By mayzey
Format:Amazon Instant Video|Verified Purchase
This is my favorite kind of movie. It is about learning more about the people that surround you. Good conversations. I love action movies, but this cozy get to know the human race kind of movies is the best. This movie will not disappoint.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Published 1 day ago by Sarah
4.0 out of 5 stars packaged properly movie itself not that great.. trailer better than...
as described... delivered on time... packaged properly
movie itself not that great.. trailer better than movie...
Published 3 days ago by lalaw
4.0 out of 5 stars Check it out
Really beautiful movie, enjoyed it beginning to end, the title threw me off because it had nothing to do with it. Read more
Published 3 days ago by mother superior
1.0 out of 5 stars Didn't Get It
I think the writer had a point. I just didn't get it. It was like, "This happened, then this happened, and so what. Read more
Published 1 month ago by taaj
3.0 out of 5 stars Definetly a different kind of movie
While the movie was entertaining, the plot was unusual. There were several times I was about to give up on the movie. Read more
Published 1 month ago by Bryan Lorge
4.0 out of 5 stars something different
A slow paced character study movie centered around a Southern family and their mother's second family, a English family, coming together around her funeral. Read more
Published 1 month ago by dhart
2.0 out of 5 stars BBT should stop trying
Billy Bob Thornton wants to be the great Everyone. Writer, director, actor,....etc. He hit his peak with "Slingblade", and it is a gem. This film is a muddled mess. Read more
Published 2 months ago by Sam
3.0 out of 5 stars Good but not great
I watched it but with the all star cast I expected more. I usually watch movies over and over. Once will be enough for me with Jayne Mansfield's Car
Published 2 months ago by Randal Autrand
5.0 out of 5 stars Interesting
Was nothing like I thought. Disfunctionial at it finest. Acting outstanding. Must stay with it. Billy Bob, Kevin, and Robert are so dang good. Read more
Published 2 months ago by Jan Butler
4.0 out of 5 stars Interesting & Quirky Movie
Great cast leads this quirky tale of a death, family, and the complexities and messiness of love and family. Well done.
Published 2 months ago by tkyeveryday
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