A partially handicapped man named Karl is released from a mental hospital, several years after murdering his mother and another person. Karl is often questioned if he will ever kill again, and he shrugs in response saying there is no reason to. Now out of the mental institution, Karl settles in his old, small hometown, occupying himself by fixing motors. After meeting a young boy named Frank who befriends him, Karl is invited to stay at Frank’s house with his mother Linda- who views Karl as a strange but kind and generous man. However, Linda’s abusive boyfriend Doyle, sees things differently in the way rules ought to be run- normally insulting Linda’s homosexual friend Vaughan as well as Karl’s disabilities, and having wild parties with his friends. As Karl’s relation with Frank grows, he is ever so watchful of Doyle’s cruel actions. –IMDb
One of Hollywood’s few celebrators of the “Southern bad boy” image, country musician turned actor-screenwriter-director Billy Bob Thornton consistently engenders a reputation — via chosen onscreen parts and fervent tabloid reports of his allegedly wild off-camera life — as an iconoclastic American hellraiser with lightning in his veins. But appearances can deceive, for Thornton also reveals depth and complexity as one Hollywood’s most articulate interviewees, graced with intelligent, sensitive observations, cultural allusions, and poignant reflections on his experiences as a thespian and film artist. Moreover, this acute insight evidences itself equally in Thornton’s craftsmanship as a screenwriter and director. Though his behind-the-camera projects have become increasingly rare over time, his few directorial outings evince surprising control, refinement, insight, and taste.
Born in Hot Springs, AR, on August 4, 1955, Thornton grew up dirt poor in the nearby backwoods community… read more
Arguably, Billy Bob Thornton's only truly memorable performance? I'm glad I watched this AFTER seeing the very disappointing Bad Santa.
"you seem like a thinker, you seem to always be deep in thought, what are you thinking now?" "i was thinking i was going to take some of those potatoes home with me" "i reckon", "all right then", "i reckon", "all right then", "i reckon", "all right then", "i ain't listening to you no more"
There is a strange heart and awkward love in this film that i absolutely adore. Karl has done a horrible thing in his past, everyone is weary of him, yet you identify with the man, and almost find yourself agreeing with his actions. It also brings up interesting moral quandaries, would the world be better off without some people? Yes, but who are we to decide who dies and why? Every character is great and feels real.