Directed by Richard Linklater
Written by Scott Hicks & Jan Sardi
Produced by Lynn Harris
Cinematography by Haris Zambarloukos
Evan Rachel Wood - Kathy Carmichael
James Franco - Eric Spencer
Eva Marie Saint - Grandma Martha
Gary Oldman - John Carmichael
Tagline: "Sometimes We Have To Face The Hardest Things in Life"
Synopsis: The film opens with 19 year old Kathy Carmichael (Wood) waking up with the sound of the alarm clock. She quickly showers, gets dressed, and checks on her grandmother, Martha (Saint), who Kathy lives with in New Jersey do to Martha's poor and failing health. Kathy is in college and she really isn't so fond of it. Kathy always wanted to be part of anything art. She had paintings and drawings all over her room, most of her deceased mother, who Kathy lost a couple of years back. The only thing Kathy looked forward to in college was Eric Spencer (Franco) who shared her course. Kathy would stare at him for a peroid of time and would think of how attractive he was. One day, Kathy was in a coffee shop when Eric came up to her and asked if he could sit with her. She embarrassingly says yes. Kathy never saw the day that moment would happen. As they talk, they share their interests, and of course Kathy mentions her love for art. Eric is impressed and asks Kathy if she would like to give him lessons one day. Kathy of course couldn't resist.
When Kathy gets home, she is suprise upon seeing her father, John (Oldman). Her father was a minor figure in her life. Kathy never felt good around her father because he was so estranged to her. She says one or two words to him before Martha walks in and gives Kathy a hug. Kathy then goes straight to her room. John then says "she must've had a bad day". The next day, Saturday, Kathy wakes up late and remembers that she was meeting Eric at his apartment. Once having lunch with her grandmother, she heads out. Once there Kathy prepares for the lessons. Kathy firsts grabs Eric's hand to show him the steady strokes one could do with a brush, Eric smiles and he looks at Kathy, he couldn't resist but to kiss her. Kathy lets him, Eric starts removing clothing, Kathy feels good as her hands travel around Eric's body, but Kathy suddenly feels nervous. She grabs her things, and apologizes. Eric begs her not to go, but Kathy ignores him and leaves. Kathy felt like a fool. She couldn't sleep that night. The next day, Kathy still couldn't forget about the moment. Her mind will quickly shift when her father visits her in the afternoon. This time he wants to talk to his daughter. He tells Kathy that when Martha passes away, she will come live with him. She tells him that will never happen and tries to walk out of the house, but John will not let her. She goes on to say that he never cared about her or her mother. John yells back that her mother was a cheating whore and she didn't deserve him. Kathy begins to cry as Martha walks in and calls him a liar to defend her dead daughter. John walks out of the house. Martha cries as she tells Kathy of how the parents should be the ones to die first, she goes on to say that her daughter was a good person. Martha wanted to say more, but she falls to the ground. We next see Kathy at her grandmother's funeral. She's standing next to Eric. When it was over, she tells Eric that she will see him soon, and she leaves him a sketchbook filled with drawings, some of him. We next see Kathy holding two luggages. John helps her put them in the car. John looks at Kathy and apologizes to her. Kathy says to him that everything was okay now. Kathy asks if she could drive, John happily says yes.
As Kathy is in the car with her father, she begins to think of how life will be with him. Sure she never forgave him, but she always pictured the day that she will reconcile with him. Kathy now realizes that the worse has already happened. Kathy was now going to search for her desires.
What the Press would say:
"Two Thumbs Up" - Ebert and Roeper
"Very moving, and the actors are spectacular" - Peter Travers (The Rolling Stone)
Evan Rachel Wood is fantastic as Kathy. It's an awards worthy performance. She plays a young woman who feels she's missing something in life. Maybe it was a mother or father or a boyfriend or even a grandmother who's health she didn't have to worry about. She will eventually realize that the most important things in life are already around her.
Eva Marie Saint is a true treasure. She is marvelous as Kathy's grandmother Martha. Saint plays an elderly woman who really never let go of her daughter's death. She's powerful in her performance as we feel sadden by her failing health. It's truly a award's winning performance.
Kathy's Desire deserves lots of recognition as it proves its one of this month's best. It delivers a strong story surrounded by a strong, talented cast. Let's not forget about James Franco who is always great in a romantic role and Gary Oldman who pitch perfect has John. A new turn for Oldman. The film shows real life problems that anyone will go threw and it is shown so well and the actors really do a marvelous job. Richard Linklater, who brought great romance to the cinemas with his "Before Sunrise", "Before Sunset" films, definently delivers another fantastic romantic drama.
Best Director - Richard Linklater
Best Actress - Evan Rachel Wood
Best Supporting Actress - Eva Marie Saint
Best Supporting Actor - Gary Oldman
Best Supporting Actor - James Franco
Best Original Screenplay
Best Casting Choice - Evan Rachel Wood