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The Station Agent
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Winner of 2003 Sundance Film Festival awards (Best Drama, Audience Award; Best Screenplay, Tom McCarthy; Best Performance, Patricia Clarkson), THE STATION AGENT stars Emmy Award winner Patricia Clarkson (TV's SIX FEET UNDER, FAR FROM HEAVEN), Peter Dinklage (ELF), and Bobby Cannavale (TV's 24, THIRD WATCH) in a comedy about friendship that will have you smiling long after the final credits. Fin McBride (Dinklage), a loner with a passion for trains, inherits an abandoned train station in the middle of nowhere -- a place that suits him just fine because all he wants is to be alone. But that is not to be. Soon after moving in, he discovers his isolated depot is more like Grand Central Station. There's Olivia (Clarkson), a distracted and troubled artist, and Joe (Cannavale), a friendly Cuban with an insatiable hunger for conversation. With absolutely nothing in common, they find their isolated lives coming together in a friendship none of them could foresee.
Judging by the commentary track, it must have been fun on the set of this Sundance Film Festival winner. The three leads and filmmaker Tim McCarthy have a heck of a good time reminiscing about making the film on the DVD's commentary track. Too bad McCarthy could not get in more about how the story came to be, but you can forgive him since it's such an enjoyable listen. The deleted scenes include an alternate ending that introduces a new character. --Doug Thomas
- Deleted scenes
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Virtually everything in the movie that he does, I get. And I get the whole 'I want to be left alone' thing that he does throughout the movie. What I don't get, is why the people around him can't respect that. All that seems to go on with the two other main characters is that they want to ingratiate themselves on him, and for what purpose I'd like to know?
And the thing with the hotdog vendor, you mean to tell me that he's from Manhattan, where there's probably a million people wandering the streets, and he's going to set up shop at a nowhere spot in the middle of nowhere? How's he supposed to make money? Come on!
And that's another problem with the screenplay. I mean, is the Peter Dinklage character supposed to be independently weatlthy or something? How does he get his money for stuff--like the coffee and ALL those cigarettes?
And how does the Bobby Cannavale character suppose to live in Manhattan (of all places) if he can't even sell enough coffee to fill his gas tank?
This movie, I don't know? It left a lot of questions for me. I couldn't even get into the Patricia Clarkson character very much. I mean, I know she's hurting because she lost her son. But, I think it was the way the movie presented this plight. I mean, it's kinda hard to feel anything, when we (the audience) didn't have the chance to know her son too. (I mean, it's just the way things should be presented in a movie--so you get to feel for and grow with the characters.) I can't see where this was done right with this movie.
All in all, I hate it when filmmakers go about making these 'quirky' little movies that don't really say very much and don't do very much. I mean, remember when a 'quirky' movie was something like that gem of a movie: Harold & Maude. Or maybe even the original version of Sweet November? Now that's the kind of quirk that I can get into--quirk with a point. Quirk with great story telling. I don't know what the Station Agent was trying to tell?
Either way, if you want to see Peter Dinklage in something good, then PLEASE check out his performance in Season 4 of Nip/Tuck. In my opinion, he made the WHOLE season. Peter Dinklage is what great acting is all about. Can't wait to see what he does next!!!
If this were a film characterized by stereotype and lack of imagination and intelligence, Finn would emerge as the valiant hero, fighting the odds that Mother Nature dealt him. But, luckily, it is not. Filmmaker (writer-director) Thomas McCarthy is much too smart and sensitive to do something stupid like that. Finn is very quiet, but has his weaknesses, shown in a great scene at the local bar in tiny Newfoundland, New Jersey where Finn's been left an old train depot by his recently deceased former boss.
In the bar, he proceeds to get truly drunk and confronts the inner demon of his enormous frustration at his dwarfism by standing on the bar and taunting everyone else to look at him. He's a fully rounded person--he shuns human company but when it's foisted upon him--by garrulous young Joe, the hot dog vendor, and by Olivia, the klutzy but beautiful local artist--he does respond. He does laugh with his new friends, he does understand that others may have pain, maybe even deeper than his.
This is one of the year's best films because it dares to raise a true, deep, and honest voice amidst the glitzy schlock that Hollywood still cranks out to rake in the millions. This is a film that should not be missed for its depth of characterization and emotion, its courage, its honesty, sensitivity, and above all, its deep understanding of what being human really means.
Very highly recommended.
Fin is a simple man, he's undersized, and quite frankly, he lives his own life, without a lot of outsiders invading it. When his best friend and boss/co-worker suddenly passes away, Fin is given a gift.
You see, Fin does have a passion for trains, and his buddy gives him a train station that is in the middle of nowhere. That's perfect, because that means no company whatsoever, no people, no distractions, just Fin and himself. Right? Well, um, not exactly. Fin soon discovers that he has the most unexpected company that he couldn't possibly want to deal with! This was supposed to be his quiet time, and he's being disturbed with all these stupid people! Or are they stupid people? Fin soon discovers, despite his insecurity and vulnerability towards the rest of the human race, that there are people out there who have their hurts and challenges in life as well.
This is so incredible, yet it is so simple. Have we forgotten how to treat people? Some of us have, and it really pisses me off sometimes! We treat people like garbage when they don't fit our standards, and we point fingers. This says you can learn to love again, and learn to put up with certain annoyances. And it packs a punch with such dignity, it'll blow your mind! If not? I guess I wouldn't expect that from everybody. But I loved it!