This film wouldn't be nearly as successful without the wondrous
understated performance by Newman.
He plays Sully, a small town man who has long since lost his family due
to his drinking, and who never amounted to much in life, but still has
a sharp sense of humor, life, sexuality, and even rage burning in
himself at age 60.
It's also a genial slice of small town life, related to Benton's
'Places in the Heart', but less treacly, and with a less Hollywood
spin. The characters (a terrific supporting cast including Jessica
Tandy, and both Bruce Willis and Melanie Griffith doing some of the
best work they've ever done) are off-beat, without it feeling like
writer/director Benton was sweating hard to create 'quirky'.
Nothing all that much happens in the film, yet people grow and change,
just like in real life.
Not quite a great film, but it still captures a sweet, almost Caprasque
Americana, without becoming cloying. The movie, like Newman, never
pushes hard, and that goes a long way.