Best Movies by Farr

The Straight Story

The Straight Story Poster
The Straight Story Poster

Released

1999

Runtime

112

The Straight Story

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What's it About

Senior citizen Alvin Straight (Farnsworth), living in a small Iowa town with daughter Rose (Spacek), hears that his estranged brother Lyle has suffered a stroke. Alvin's short of money, and his failing eyesight has robbed him of his driver's license, but he still wants to visit Lyle to make amends. He climbs on his old John Deere lawnmower and starts his trip to see Lyle in Wisconsin, over two hundred miles away.

Why we love it

Director David Lynch is atypically restrained in rendering this heartwarming story, one you might not believe if it weren't true. Oscar-nominated Farnsworth gets the role of his career, inhabiting the weathered Alvin like a favorite old work-shirt. Alvin's full life is written all over his face; his folksy openness belies a hard-won wisdom. As we see him touch those he meets along his route, we get to know this humble man, and root for him to make it to his brother. An unadorned triumph, celebrating the power of forgiveness and human perseverance. Great family viewing.