When you regularly cover the festival and indie film beat, it’s always a little surprising when a movie somehow slips under your radar. It’s especially surprising when that film is something like FURLOUGH, the new film from Laurie Collyer, whose 2006 film Sherrybaby was such a terrific revelation.
Sherrybaby premiered at the Sundance Film Festival, while Collyer’s follow-up Sunlight Jr. premiered at Tribeca five years ago, but her new film Furlough? Despite an amazing cast of Oscar winners — which we’re reminded of in the new trailer from IFC Films — the movie was produced under the radar and is being released just as quietly on March 16.
Trailers can be deceiving, but the movie looks kind of fun with Tessa Thompson from Thor: Ragnarok playing a prison guard who is assigned to escort Melissa Leo’s rowdy convict to visit her dying mother.
It’s the kind of plot that we might find in a buddy comedy, and actually, it’s a little like the set-up for the Nick Nolte-Eddie Murphy comedy 48 Hours, but when you have Oscar-winning actors like Leo and Whoopie Goldberg and Anna Paquin in the cast, you have to expect something a little more substantial. The movie also stars Edgar Ramirez.
Although Furlough somehow avoided the film festival circuit altogether, IFC Films picked it up in December and will release it next week on March 16.
The official plot synopsis is:
In between caring for her mother (Goldberg), a young woman (Thompson) works part time at a prison. The rookie guard gets a chance to prove her mettle when she’s tasked with accompanying a hell-raising inmate (Leo) on an emergency furlough to visit her dying mother. But things soon spiral out of control, sending the pair on a hilarious, surprising, and ultimately touching road trip. With Oscar(R) winner Anna Paquin, Édgar Ramírez, and La La Anthony.
Edward Douglas | East Coast Editor