But it has to do with a woman who was happily married, husband dies in fatal accident, she has to settle financial matters leaving her with only a home, no marketable skills, and two growing boys.
She is forced to sell the home, move to Balitmore, find work that pays a half way decent buck, find romance, lose the new romance or come close to, her older son, played by Chris O'Donnel, is involved with an older woman played by Joan Cussack, and, in the end, this mother becomes very depressed at the whole, I mean, the whole situation: her reality.
This is a great movie. It depicts, for a change, a non minority family, who also goes through tough times and also experiences the same hardships of others.
From that point, money woes plague Jessica and she has to move her family from the lush suburbs to a more edgy part of Baltimore. At this point her two boys become more affected by the new surroundings as each crave for the attention left by the oid of their late father. Chris O Donnel's character is especially rebelious as he takes on "the man of the house" role and acts up around Lange's musician love interest.
Its very interesting how the relationships between mother and sons shift and change as the movie develops. The influence of both O'Donnel's and Lange's romantic relationships are quite unique as well. In spite of some rebelious attitudes by all, the bonds of family seem to stand strong. Help proves to be around the corner.
Good pacing, drama, and balance between laughter and tears. This movie does have a fairly broad appeal to many audiences.
Chris O'Donnell's scene at the Riverfront with Arliss Howard is one of the great, emotionally open and heart wrenching scenes in movies...ever. O'Donnell has not been as truthful in films, since.
"Men Don't Leave" was much ignored when it first opened and it is an embarrassment that it is not available on DVD. But nonetheless, it contains one of the best performances of Jessica Lange's career and it is not to be missed by anyone interested in fine movie acting.