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Lymelife (2008)

Alec Baldwin , Kieran Culkin , Derick Martini  |  R |  DVD
3.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (26 customer reviews)

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Product Details

  • Actors: Alec Baldwin, Kieran Culkin, Rory Culkin, Jill Hennessy, Timothy Hutton
  • Directors: Derick Martini
  • Format: Multiple Formats, AC-3, Color, Dolby, NTSC, Subtitled, Widescreen
  • Language: English
  • Subtitles: English, Spanish
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 2.40:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: R (Restricted)
  • Studio: Screen Media
  • DVD Release Date: September 22, 2009
  • Run Time: 95 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 3.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (26 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B002FP1426
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #44,693 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Lymelife" on IMDb

Special Features

None.

Editorial Reviews

Based on the true childhood experiences of director Derick Martini, Lymelife is the coming of age story of 15-year old Scott growing up in suburban Long Island. While caught up in his first love, Scott watches the relationships of his parents and their neighbors slowly crumble as they try to keep up with the changing times and expectations of the 1970s. Critically acclaimed, Lymelife features a magnificent ensemble cast, with incredible performances that make you laugh and cry along with them.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
17 of 18 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Timothy Hutton.....where's his Oscar? October 24, 2009
Format:DVD
I am still shocked that some reviewer wrote "laugh out loud funny" after seeing this film. Granted, there are moments where you might smile. But more than anything, this film is sad; depicting the genuine heartache that is wrought when a family falls apart.
Baldwin and Nixon - both excellent actors - are good, but not brilliant. I expected better. The acting performance of Emma Roberts is terrible - that her aunt is Julia Roberts no doubt explains her being granted this role. Timothy Hutton, however, as the lyme-diseased, depressed husband who witnesses his wife's infidelity - deserves the highest accolades. His performance in this film is flawless, portraying a man suffering from a disease that has rendered him incapable of functioning as the man he once was. I found his performance riveting and heartbreaking. Kieran Culkin is the next Sean Penn - that is a given. His underscored performance as a love-struck, confused teen was excellent. And his brother - Rory Culkin - was also excellent. Hutton and the kids stole this film. I don't want to go over the plot - but I do recommend this film. It is well-done, and well-acted....but it's not "laugh out loud funny" at all. Whenever children suffer, there is little to laugh at.
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13 of 14 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An engaging coming-of-age drama September 28, 2009
Format:DVD
I admit that I picked this for viewing because of Alec Baldwin. The guy may have had his shares of troubles but he is quite a charismatic actor (well, in some movies more than others). Set in Long Island, N.Y., the time period is the mid-70s, and it also has two Culkin brothers in it. Rory Culkin portrays a 15-year-old, Scott Bartlett whose parents,real estate developer Mickey (Alec Baldwin in a wolfish and arrogant role) and passive mother, Brenda (Jill Hennessy) reflect the trappings of a successful life, but are not altogether happy in their marriage. Scott is however more concerned with the girl next door, attractive Adrianna (Emma Roberts of Nancy Drew) who sort of teases him, but has other romantic inclinations. Adrianna' mom, Melissa (Cynthia Nixon)works for Mickey, and portrays a long-suffering wife who has to deal with her Lyme-disease addled husband, Tommy (Timothy Hutton). Oh, and there's Scott's brother Jimmy (Kieran Culkin), who's on leave from the army.

The drama of the two families unfolds slowly, portraying the gradual unraveling of two marriages, whilst also delving into the sexual awakening of an adolescent boy who is tormented by his attraction to Adrianna, and also concerned about his parents' marriage. Rory Culkin does a credible job of playing the angsty teen, and grows on the viewer, eliciting one's empathy for the growing pains he goes through, without being overly melodramatic or sentimental. There's a good balance between the dark and light in this drama, and the ensemble cast does a great job in maintaining this balance, especially Alec Baldwin who plays true to type here.

The story is far from fresh or original,as there have been so many other movies made about dysfunctional families, and adolescence (one of my favorites is "The Squid and the Whale") yet it strikes a chord, and this is largely due to the heartfelt performance by Rory Culkin. Another well-made coming-of-age movie is The Education of Charlie Banks.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Not exactly uplifting, or even enthralling November 30, 2009
Format:DVD
3.4 stars

Ok, so it's a true story. The script is fair enough, direction too. The acting is uniformly decent, with Baldwin as usual stealing the show. The lead is likeable enough. So why didn't I enjoy this film?

Good question. Probably because it's just a little too realistic, meaning there's a lack of redemption, or whatever it is that makes art art and life not so art. I just found it all too bleak, in a very bland sort of way. Yes, the suburbs are full of deception and disappointment and dismay and d-everything. But that doesn't mean I want to watch them played out on screen...unless something really special and revealing occurs. And here, it doesn't.

Well done, but I'd recommend you watch American Beauty or Ordinary People or Kramer vs. Kramer or any of the many other superior suburban drams. Sadly, this one never gets there, despite good work all around.
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17 of 22 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Coming of age set to a depressing back story September 29, 2009
Format:DVD
I expected a funny comedy, the DVD cover art says, 'Violently Funny,' 'Laugh Out Loud Funny, entertaining and moving,' 'Wonderful,' and 'Tender.' The film inside isn't exactly any of these things. It is a coming of age film set in 1979 with the backdrop of some incredibly dysfunctional adults. No, I'm sorry; I laughed a little at the beginning, but then was just left sad after the half way point passed.

The film starts off quirky and interesting. I love film that tries new things, sets up a different style, hides things from the viewer, and uses unusual music. All there in a wonderful mix during the first 30 minutes. At first I couldn't place the setting year (later in the film I discovered it is 1979, shown in a very pointed manner), so that was a bit unsettling. Two different families are shown and their relationship is unveiled slowly and wonderfully. There are a number of jokes that are genuinely funny. At about midpoint the film starts to devolve into lies, cheating, foul language, standard melodrama editing and filming, and the characters just become less and less believable and lose my connection with them (save the two lead characters, best friends Adrianna and Scott).

Sadly as this film lost my interest, I started to notice horribly sloppy editing and continuity. Normally these things just pass by, I enjoy a film, I'm engrossed in the story, and continuity, unless grossly bad, just slips past. Not here, the story line got so bogged down that I started noticing all these problems. I noticed way too many cuts where somebody would have their hand up to their mouth and an immediate reverse cut with their hand down; cigarettes that change length immediately; or facial expressions that change too quickly during a cut.

The cast.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Good movie
This movie was great, The quality of the disc was excellent, no skips, hardly any wear on disc, overall happy with this!
Published 14 months ago by Anonymous
3.0 out of 5 stars Lymelife
The movie was good, not great. Interesting story about teenagers & their parents, their interactions & problems. It was entertaining. I would recommend it.
Published 15 months ago by iris
5.0 out of 5 stars A threat to more tahn you know.
Traditional medicine has chosen to ignore this very threatening disease developed and patented by our very own Germ Warfare scientists HQ'd on Plum Island, Long Island, New York. Read more
Published 18 months ago by Michael A Szumilas
3.0 out of 5 stars YOU CAN ALWAYS HEAR THE TRAIN
First off this is NOT the "laugh out loud, violently funny" comedy that is advertised on the front of the box. Read more
Published on June 6, 2012 by The Movie Guy
2.0 out of 5 stars Lymelife: A Carbon Coby of American Beauty
I can finally see why the critics and audiences on Rottentomatoes.com alike gave this film 58% and 50% respectively for Lymelife. Read more
Published on April 25, 2012 by Mr. J. Murdock
5.0 out of 5 stars Extremely Well Rounded Movie
Great movie. Keeps you wondering whats gonna happen next and has a very high rewatch value. The characters are well formed and portrayed incredibly.
Published on June 29, 2011 by Carmela
4.0 out of 5 stars Exceeded my expectations
Though billed as a comedy, this is really an indie with more drama than comedy, certainly the ending, of which there is an alternate that is much worse. Read more
Published on December 30, 2010 by Brad Smith
5.0 out of 5 stars BRILLIANT
From the awkward opening scenes before the title comes up, all the way through the insanely intense ending, I was completely caught off guard. The story is simple. Read more
Published on September 20, 2010 by BR
5.0 out of 5 stars good drama
Yes, Lymelife is actually a drama. It's not a comedy. If there's any comedy segments here, they only appear briefly before immediately switching back to drama scenes. Read more
Published on August 6, 2010 by B. E Jackson
4.0 out of 5 stars American life
Don't let comparisons with American Beauty sway your judgement or unduly put you off Lymelife. Sure, it deals with dysfunction in American families that is very much tied to... Read more
Published on August 5, 2010 by Keris Nine
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