The folks in Lake City have more problems than mice at a cat convention. Or Sarah Palin at a Katie Couric interview. Or well, you get the Southern-fried idea. On the run from drug thugs and with a kid in tow, a sad-eyed mook named Billy (Troy Garity) heads to the Virginia farm where his mama (Sissy Spacek) leads a lonely life of self-sufficiency. Why is Billy fleeing, and who's the kid? Wait and find out. (The Sopranos' Drea de Matteo, in strung-out, smudged-mascara mode, has something to do with it.) Why is Mama melancholy in her small town of friendly neighbors? Keep waiting and find out about her Terrible Tragedy From the Past.
Why do these characters with woes so big affect us so little? The answer lies in the generic, undifferentiated indie stylings of writer-directors Hunter Hill and Perry Moore. The story is as impersonal as it is labored. And the filmmaking follows suit, with images that are blandly pretty (there's a South by Southeast chase through a cornfield) and dialogue that's pretty bland. I hoped for something hot when Rebecca Romijn showed up as a local cop who knew Billy as a kid. But no luck: She just does standard small-town cop things, in uniform. C–