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Painted House

4.2 out of 5 stars 53 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

Based on the novel by John Grisham. Until that September in 1952, Luke Chandler had never kept a secret or told a single lie. But in that long, hot summer when 10-year-old Luke Chandler comes of age, two groups of migrant workers - and two very dangerous men - come through the Arkansas Delta to work the Chandler cotton farm. And suddenly mysteries flood Luke's world. A murder leaves the town seething in gossip and suspicion. A beautiful young woman catches Luke's eye. A fatherless baby is born, and someone has begun furtively painting the bare clapboards of the Chandler farmhouse, slowly, painstakingly bathing the run-down structure in gleaming white. As young Luke watches the world around him, he shelters secrets that could shatter lives - and change his family forever. A memorable adaptation of John Grisham's life-affirming story, A Painted House draws on childhood memories and "local lore" from his Arkansas roots.

Amazon.com

Even by the high standards of the Hallmark Hall of Fame, A Painted House is well above average. John Grisham's well-received "lawyer-free" novel was respectfully adapted by Patrick Sheane Duncan (Mr. Holland's Opus), and director Alfonso Arau (Like Water for Chocolate, A Walk in the Clouds) brings just the right touch of toughness and delicate nostalgia to Grisham's semi-autobiographical remembrance of boyhood in rural Arkansas, circa 1952. Grisham's alter ego is 10-year-old Luke Chandler (well played by Logan Lerman), and when tempers flare into violence between the Mexican migrant workers and itinerant "hill people" hired to harvest cotton on his grandfather's farm, Luke--who has witnessed a murder--must decide whether to expose the killer or keep the crime a secret. Filled with warm grace notes and a perfect cast including leather-faced Scott Glenn and Melinda Dillon (as Luke's grandparents), A Painted House juggles multiple crises (including devastating rainstorms) with strong family values, capturing the humor and hardship of farming life at a crossroads of fading tradition and inevitable change. Combining elements of To Kill a Mockingbird and Places in the Heart, this is a purebred Hallmark production in every respect, earning a badge of pride for everyone involved in its making. --Jeff Shannon

Special Features

None.

Product Details

  • Actors: Scott Glenn, Arija Bareikis, Robert Sean Leonard, Melinda Dillon, Logan Lerman
  • Directors: Alfonso Arau
  • Writers: John Grisham, Patrick Sheane Duncan
  • Producers: Brent Shields, Cameron Johann, Gordon Wolf, Richard Welsh
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Closed-captioned, Color, Full Screen, NTSC
  • Language: English (Dolby Digital 2.0 Surround)
  • Subtitles: English, Spanish
  • Dubbed: French, Spanish
  • 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: Lions Gate
  • DVD Release Date: October 21, 2003
  • Run Time: 97 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (53 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B0000C3I8M
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #94,271 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Painted House" on IMDb

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Judith Miller VINE VOICE on September 18, 2004
Format: DVD
Having listened to this book on tape, my husband and I were delighted to see that Hallmark Hall of Fame had turned this wonderful story into a film. We were not disappointed.

This story takes place in Arkansas and is set in September of 1952. The Chandler family owns a farm. They grow cotton and hire both, Mexican migrant workers and Hill people, to pick their crop. The two groups clash when they meet on the Chandler farm. The story is told by 10 year old Luke Chandler. Logan Lerman gave a memorable performance as Luke. The entire cast was good, and we also enjoyed Scott Glenn in the role of Luke's grandfather.

John Grisham's books are always captivating, but this is my favorite. I wish that he would write more stories like this one. It gave us a look at America in a different era when baseball was an American past time and families worked together for a common goal. It also showed the relationship between the farmers and migrant workers who shared the responsibility of harvesting the cotton.
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By R. Polk on September 16, 2004
Format: DVD
most reviewers think they need to write an essay comparrison between the book and movie. I am simply going to review the movie. It was great and very heartwarming. A good family classic to have. Good values and a great glimpse into southern life. Too bad movies today don't have the same wholesome storyline that A Painted House does.
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I was curious about this film because I had recently read - and enjoyed - the book by John Grisham. And well, yes, the book IS better, but who would expecte anything else? The movie version still is very good indeed, the acting was good. Scott Glenn played the grandfather very convincingly and Logan Lerman gave a promising performance as young Luke Chandler. These two worked well together and they are the main characters. Although some slight story adaptations were made, the film still stays true to the book (John Grisham himself was involved in the project). There should have been a little more focus on the character of Cowboy, since his part in the story got bigger towards the end and only little background about the developing conflict between him and Hank Spruill (a very good performance by Pablo Schreiber as the angry young man) was really given - whereas in the book the conflict builds gradually. The final - and fatal - fight between the two also differs from the book version, but the way it starts here was probably necessary to make it work (see my comment about the lack of development). Apart from a few minor upsets, this is a fine and entertaining film.
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I haven't read the book, but as a movie, I was really impressed. Logan Lerman really shines, he really puts life into Luke. I really enjoyed getting lost into this movie and the acting made it easy to feel what they were feeling. A wonderful movie about a boy dealing with life, problems, yet still being a kid, a farm family trying to survive. I've found that when books are turned into movies, they often have many differnces from the books, so I try to view the movie separate from the book on it's own terms. The Painted House tells a story, and has feeling. Perfect, no, enjoyable, definately!!
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An excellent movie breathing life into the story and characters as depicted in John Grisham's story.

I loved the book and this film really does it justice. A must have for any John Grisham fans.
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I ordered this movie because first and foremost it is a John Grisham story, and secondly, I enjoyed the book on which it is based. However, perhaps because it was a made for TV movie, the writing, casting, and acting are not nearly of the same caliber as in other movies based on John Grisham novels, i.e. "the Pelican Brief."

I do not recommend this movie if you are counting on the quality of a Grisham novel in movie form. Hold off until it is remade with a better budget and higher production values.
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Logan Lerman is one of today's finest young actors, his latest film the acclaimed "Perks of Being A Wallflower". He was
also in 3:10 to Yuma, and very good in "The Butterfly Effect", so I took a chance and purchased this family style film
unseen. Apparently, based on reviews of the book on which it is based, this film is very watered down, which is rather
apparent in the fact that not much of interest happens, and there doesn't seem to be any specific goal that the film is
aiming for. It doesn't leave the viewer with much reason for why painting this house is so important. This is not Logan
Lerman's fault, but rather the script writer and the director, who I guess decided that since Hallmark is supposed to be
family friendly, had to remove aspects of the original story. Since I haven't read the book, I can't be sure, but I can say
that this film failed to fully engage me, and I suspect many others will feel similarly. Just so-so.
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For me, this movie isn't so much about the individuals - it's about the families trying to scratch out a living in the delta area of eastern Arkansas, and what life was like for them in the early 50's. It had an impact on their values and how they faced the troubles in their lives. They had to stick together to survive.

Trivia: the movie got my curiosity going about that old pickup truck the family had. (For those who also wondered: it was a '38 or '39 Ford.)

The DVD: the usual Hallmark DVD (no captions or subtitles), but it had a few more scenes than the version that was televised by the Hallmark Movie Channel.
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