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Diggers (R)





Release Date: April 27th, 2007 (Landmark Sunshine Cinemas)
The Cast: Paul Rudd, Lauren Ambrose, Ron Eldard, Josh Hamilton, Sarah Paulson, Ken Marino, Maura Tierney.
Directed by Katherine Dieckmann.

BASIC PREMISE: During the 1970ís, Hunt (Rudd), a Long Island clam-digger, grieves from the death of his father while he and his buddies, also clam-diggers, lose income when a corporation buys water rights which limits their clam-digging.

ENTERTAINMENT VALUE: Diggers fails to be an absorbing drama even though itís mostly character-driven without relying on gimmicky plot twists. In the opening scenes, Hunt grieves from the death of his father which affects his relationship with his divorced sister, Gina (Tierney). He and his friends, Lozo (Marino), Cons (Hamilton) and Jack (Eldard) can no longer financially support themselves with their clam-digging business. Of course, one of them, Cons, turns to drug dealing. Jack sleeps with Gina, which angers her over-protective brother, Hunt. Some scenes feel too melodramatic while others just feel bland, especially given the excessively sluggish pace. Screenwriter Ken Marino fails to bring any of the characters to life even though they all have their own distinct problems. The thin plot goes off on a rather corny tangent when Hunt flirts with Zoey (Ambrose) a big-city girl who visits the small Long Island town. Their brief romance feels contrived and unnecessary. On a positive note, decent performances, particularly by Paul Rudd and Maura Tierney, at least help to make this a mildly engaging drama. Director Katherine Dieckmann does a great job of choosing the right set designs, locations, costumes and music to give an authentic feel of the 70ís

SPIRITUAL VALUE: Unfortunately, none.

INSULT TO YOUR INTELLIGENCE: Somewhat contrived and bland.

NUMBER OF TIMES I CHECKED MY WATCH: 6

IN A NUTSHELL: Decent performances and authentic 70ís atmosphere barely compensate for a somewhat contrived and bland plot.

RECOMMENDED WAY TO WATCH: DVD


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