Flash Movie Review: Half Nelson
I wanted to hold off reviewing this movie, since I recently did Lars and the Real Girl. But when an actor consistently creates excellent roles, I want to see more of them after seeing one of their films. Ryan Gosling (Drive; Crazy, Stupid, Love) is who I am referring to and in this exceptional movie he does an incredible job as Dan Dunne. A motivating junior high school teacher during the day and a drug addict at night, Ryan’s performance was brilliant. Having known an individual addicted to crack cocaine, Mr. Gosling had the mannerisms, the nuances in perfect synch to what I remembered about this troubled person. Shareeka Epps (My Sould to Take, The Winning Season) as Drey showed some powerful acting as the student who discovered Mr. Dunne passed out in the bathroom. Instead of walking away or reporting it, she helped in reviving him. An unlikely friendship began between the two deficient characters. Now I know what you must be thinking: in this day and age a pairing of this kind would be highly suspect. Just go with it, because in this film it leads to some deep emotional turmoil. With a steady string of memorable performances, it appears Ryan Gosling can do no wrong and neither will you by watching this movie.
3 1/3 stars — DVD