2017, USA, 96 min.
Lee Hayden (Sam Elliott), 71, is coasting on the fumes of a long-dormant acting career, looking for work and biding time with his friend/pot dealer (Nick Offerman) in stoned, leisurely inertia. When he gets a troubling medical diagnosis, he looks to mend his relationship with his adult daughter (Krysten Ritter) and embarks on a romance with a much younger woman (Laura Prepon). Neither knows of his diagnosis, but Lee’s uncertain future, coupled with a sudden career resurgence, turns his stagnation into a full-fledged personal crisis. Can he revive his legacy and lean into the comfort of success or should he open himself up to the highs and lows of real-life relationships? The movie’s theme is universal, but Elliott’s empathetic, weathered performance makes us feel that weight all the more—and provides ample reason to go on Lee’s alternately somber and enlightening journey. Director and co-writer Brett Haley also directed Elliott in I’ll See You in My Dreams (2015), which comes highly recommended.