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Small Beautifully Moving Parts (2012)

Anna Margaret Hollyman , Lisa Robinson , Annie Howell  |  Unrated |  DVD
4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)

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Product Details

  • Actors: Anna Margaret Hollyman
  • Directors: Lisa Robinson, Annie Howell
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Color, NTSC
  • Language: English
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: Unrated
  • Studio: Film Movement
  • DVD Release Date: September 4, 2012
  • Run Time: 73 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B007MJ9LMA
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #302,059 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)

Special Features

None.

Editorial Reviews

Sarah Sparks is pregnant and feeling wholly ambivalent, despite her boyfriend's pure enthusiasm. A committed tech-geek, she fears she is more interested in ultrasound technology than in what's being ultra-sounded. When her sister lures her to L.A. for what ends up being a terrorizing baby shower, Sarah keeps her rental van and hits the road in search of the source of her anxiety: her estranged mother, now living off the grid. Small, Beautifully Moving Parts takes a comic and poignant look at one woman's coming-of-parenthood in the age of technology.

Customer Reviews

4.7 out of 5 stars
(7)
4.7 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
The indie "Small, Beautifully Moving Parts" is one of those micro-budgeted film experiences that you'd be unlikely to have a chance to see outside of the festival circuit. That's the key, though, that makes it seem so refreshing. As a little film (and only 73 minutes at that), the movie has a lot to say about family and connectivity in the contemporary age. Its goals are modest, its themes are recognizable, and its characters are identifiable. Filmmakers Annie J. Howell and Lisa Robinson have crafted an intimate character study that has a quirky appeal without ever devolving into preciousness. And that's not always easy to do in an era where quirk has replaced genuine emotion in most mainstream comedies. So, "Small, Beautifully Moving Parts" is easy to like and recommend as long as you're not expecting a big or glossy production. Its quiet power is incredibly subtle and as our heroine discovers her own truth by the end of the film, it's surprisingly low-key but no less effective for this restrained approach.

The film centers around a young women (Anna Margaret Hollyman) obsessed with all forms of technology and how things work. She seems less connected, however, with human interactions and the complexities of her own personal life. As she discovers that she is pregnant, she is completely ill-equipped to deal with the news and seemingly ambivalent about the prospect of being a mother. In order to understand her own feelings, she embarks on a road trip to reunite with family and ultimately come to grips with a mother who abandoned her and moved completely off the grid. The trip is pleasant and amusing, at first, but the encounters become increasingly honest and candid.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Quirky and loveable. October 6, 2014
“Small, Beautifully Moving Parts” (2012 release; 73 min.) brings the story of Sarah Sparks, a technology freelance consultant/researcher. It’s not long into the movie that Sarah finds out she is pregnant, and before we know it, we is off to a baby shower in LA, given by here sister. Along the way we learn of the (non) relationship Sarah has with her mom, whom she hasn’t spoken to “in years”. Sarah decides to visit her dad (in northern CA), where she learns that her mom has gone “off the grid” somewhere in Arizona. Off she goes to Arizona. To tell you more would spoil your viewing experience, you’ll just have to see for yourself how it all plays out.

Couple of comments: first, this is the debut feature length film from writers-directors Annie Howell and Lisa Robinson. It seems that they found something off-beat and quirky which they felt comfortable with, as Sarah is preparing for motherhood but feeling disconnected/numb. Second, lead actress Anna Margaret Hollyman carries this movie on her shoulders. She oozes charm from start to finish, while portraying doubting Sarah with verve and determination. Third, this is as much a road movie as it is a character study or examination of pending motherhood. The movie flies by in no time, and in fact I was amazed when the end credits star started rolling. It’s over already? Bottom line: this movie is as quirky as it is loveable, and I am quite certain that you will enjoy this.

This movie was released on DVD in 2012 by the good folks at Film Movement. As usual. the DVD comes with a bonus shortie, but this time we get a super-treat, not one but two shorties. The first one is “Head Stand”, Lisa Robinson’s debut short (2000 release; 9 min.), a B&W about a woman trying to do a yoga stand on her head.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Funny and relevant coming-of-parenthood flick October 6, 2012
Small, Beautifully Moving Parts is dubbed as a "coming of parenthood tale for the internet age" which had me drawn in from the get go. Take two of my favorite things: coming-of-age dramedies and technology, and you can't miss. Gladly, Parts combines both attributes perfectly and makes for a charming little surprise of a film this year.

The film follows a young woman named Sarah Sparks (a breakout role for Anna Margaret Hollyman) who discovers that she's pregnant along with boyfriend Leon (Andre Holland). Leon couldn't be more excited about the news, but Sarah's feelings are less apparent than her interest in the different gadgets in the doctor's examination room.

Sarah is a very lovable and relevant character with some nerdy appeal. She reflects today's techno-savvy independent woman wrapped in a cute and quirky package. She is a socially relevant and much needed female heroine, much like Lisbeth Salander (except without, you know, all of the violence). Sarah is what really drew me into the film and kept me watching all the way as I welcomed such a fresh and interesting character, a breath of fresh air for today's films.

The story, while not reinventing the genre as much as the main character, is heartfelt and honest. It follows Sarah as she goes on a journey in search of answers, most importantly from her own estranged mother. She ventures out alone in a mini van in search of her "off the grid" mother. Along the way she meets up with a few characters, from her equally techno-loving father to Leon's pseudo free spirit sister. The trip is full of some great road and desert shots that fit the mood of each step of the adventure perfectly.

All of the characters are well written and likable in their own way.
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