City Island

MPAA Rating: PG-13

Entertainment: +4

Content: -2

Andy Garcia, Julianna Margulies, Emily Mortimer, Alan Arkin, Steven Strait. DIRECTOR: Raymond De Felitta.

FILM SYNOPSIS: A middle class Italian family, the Rizzos, live in City Island, a fishing village in The Bronx. Vince (Andy Garcia) lives with his wife Joyce (Julianna Margulies), college student daughter Vivian (Dominik Garcia-Lorido) and young teen son, Vince, Jr. (Ezra Miller). Vinceís job as a prison guard presents him with a very unusual situation: a homeless inmate up for parole is Vinceís illegitimate son abandoned before birth. Without revealing his shameful irresponsibility, Vince takes the mystified, clueless Tony (Steven Strait) home to live with his family. Thatís not the only family secret Ė each family member is harboring at least one shocking secret from the others. How these scrambled deceptions and misunderstandings are resolved makes for a very funny, clever and well-acted film.

City Island received the Audience Award in the 2009 Tribeca Film Festival. It is to be featured in the Dallas International Film Festival in April.

PREVIEW REVIEW: Itís refreshing to watch a movie filled with flawed characters who are not mean or vindictive. Their secrets are motivated by a concern to spare hurting and disappointing loved ones. Vince learns that hiding the truth is very hard work and the more he tries to cover it up, the more harmful the consequences. Joyce is already suspicious about his nightly poker games, assuming he is having an affair. Actually, he is taking acting lessons and too embarrassed to tell anyone, especially his wife. His acting coach (Alan Arkin) assigns Vince to partner with Molly (Emily Mortimer), who becomes his confidante with her own secret. By sharing his dilemma with Molly, Vince sees what he must do to mend his family.

During his first meal in his new home, Tony witnesses the anger festering in the family as accusations and insults fly back and forth. That scene made this reviewer uncomfortable because of its intensity, but it is important to understand the familyís need for healing, atonement and forgiveness. Unfortunately, excessive obscenities, mostly s-words, several profanities, including one G-d, prevent a positive content rating. Near nudity includes Vivian performing in a strip club to earn money for college tuition. There is no sex, but Joyce makes fairly aggressive advances toward Tony because she thinks her husband is cheating on her.

Preview Reviewer: Mary Draughon
Anchor Bay Films

The following categories contain objective listings of film content which contribute to the subjective numeric Content ratings posted to the left and on the Home page.

Crude Language: Several crude terms

Obscene Language: At least 10 s-words and slang word for sex

Profanity: Several times (G-d once, exclamatory use of OMG few times)

Violence: One kick to groin

Sex: None

Nudity: None

Sexual Dialogue/Gesture: Married woman rebuffed when she makes advances toward young man ; college student dancing in strip club in very revealing outfit

Drugs: Some cigarette smoking by adults and teenagers

Other: Importance of honest communication within family

Running Time: 103 minutes
Intended Audience: Teenagers and Adults

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