Thank you Brian Dennehy for great movies and television shows. This post is not about him, but a couple of his contemporaries and a quirky, delightful movie, “Secondhand Lions”. I don’t think I’ve posted about it before; at least I didn’t see it when I did a quick search. The movie takes place in the 1960s on an isolated place in west Texas. The McCann brothers, Hub (Robert Duvall) and Garth (Michael Caine) wind up with their great nephew Walter (Haley Joel Osment) for the summer. The mother Mae, played by Kera Sedgwick, is utterly irresponsible which plays out in multiple ways. Of the two childless uncles, Garth is the most sympathetic to the boy, although Hub is more so than his tough exterior allows him to express. The two men are rumored to have a great treasure on the premises, thus the constant presence of greedy relatives and persistent traveling salesmen.
The first thirty minutes might move a bit slowly for some, but is important in setting up the story. Wild tales of great adventure of the brothers are told to Walter as the dynamics shift and relationships change, both humorously and touchingly. The meaning of family, the aspect of aging away from one’s youth, the concept of one true great love, are woven together as the summer progresses. The speech, “What Every Boy Needs To Know About Being a Man” (or words to that effect), is heartwarming and the closing scenes of the movie are perfect. I didn’t realize until today it was actually a book published in 2003. I probably should have thought of that before since so many movies are adapted. I don’t think it’s on Kindle so I won’t order it as I really am trying to not add to the physical number of books we have. Anyway, as people are still inside a great deal, keep an eye out for this movie.