on August 01, 2008 by Pat Kramer
As interesting as it is bizarre, "Angela" reveals the spiritual struggles two children face as they strive to make sense of the violent mood swings of their manic-depressive mother and the beliefs they create about their roles in causing her troubles and curing her. Vividly portraying the roles of 10-year old Angela and her six-year old sister are newcomers Miranda Stuart Rhyne and Charlotte Blythe. Anna Thomson ("Unforgiven") plays the mother, once a singer but now often locked inside her mental illness. John Ventimiglia ("The Funeral") is their father, who brings the girls to church in an effort to give the girls normalcy; there, Angela learns about evil and redemption, and she decides to create perilous purification rituals to make her mother well.
"Angela" marks the directing debut of actress Rebecca Miller ("Wind"), daughter of playwright Arthur Miller. A double award winner at Sundance, this message movie is hauntingly beautiful, but at times it is fraught with so much symbolism that it can be difficult to follow. Starring Anna Thomson, John Venti-miglia, Miranda Stuart Rhyne and Charlotte Blythe. Directed and written by Rebecca Miller. Produced by Ron Kastner. A Tree Farm release. Drama. Unrated. Running time: 103 min.
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