Lo, here's an increasingly rare specimen for you: an exercise in scruffily sincere, Sundance-certified Amerindiecana that won't make you cringe in embarrassment for the whole superannuated species. It may, however, make you cringe in embarrassment by striking too close to home. Its uneasy relationship with the creeping self-satisfaction of recovery narratives lends nuanced irony to the qualified triumph of sobriety.
Nothing new under the sun here save an unromantic more realistic finish. Main reason to catch this one is Mary Elizabeth Winstead who gives a career best performance to date and similarly Aaron Paul who is solid as the husband who doesn't realize he's part of the problem. Otherwise its pretty much TV movie of the week material despite a pretty cool indie soundtrack. Bill Callahan over the closing credits is apt.
One thing that this little slice of the wet life does quite well, aided by Winstead and Paul's warm performances, is ably and efficiently set up a distinction between the wreck that is the main couple's home and the characters themselves. Paul's character isn't a bad drunk, per se, but the life he shares with Winstead is a bad situation, and that distinction makes the final scenes quite effective as she breaks away
Very simple story but done extremely well due to it's acting and restrained direction. Side note: she's a drunk alcoholic and I don't get to see her naked ONCE? Fuck this. I had to see my dad stumble around naked several times when he was drinking (one time it lasted the length of the business card scene in "American Psycho") but I can't see Mary Elizabeth Winstead naked for two seconds? Total horse shit.
Understated, perhaps, but nevertheless a compelling take on the well-worn thread of addiction, with heavy emphasis on Kate's character; indeed, more of the excellent Aaron Paul (Jesse in "Breaking Bad") would have been appreciated, but Winstead is so strong, and the story is so tight, that it isn't a big deal.