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August: Osage County

  • Drama
  • 2013
  • John Wells
  • 115 mins
  • 15

Summary

Three estranged sisters return to their family home following their father's suicide, and resume their complex relationship with their overbearing, malicious mother. Over the day of the funeral, tensions among the family reach boiling point as secrets and recriminations are brought to light. Drama, starring Meryl Streep, Julia Roberts, Juliette Lewis and Julianne Nicholson.

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Review

Rating: 3 out of 5.

Pill-popping queen bitch Meryl Streep abstractedly deals with her poet husband's suicide in Tracy Letts's adaptation of his own Pulitzer Prize-winning stage smash. Meanwhile, Streep's long-suffering family exposes festering wounds, rehash bitter feuds and reveal long-buried secrets in attempts to restore stability at the Oklahoma wake. But this latest episode in the playwright's torn dysfunctional family manual (after Killer Joe and Bug) finds its dark satire on American society blunted into a southern-fried screaming match. It's histrionic rather than involving, evoking more trailer trash Dallas than Tennessee Williams. But the members of the stellar cast are each given their moment to shine in the sweltering spotlight, with Chris Cooper's moving plea over his wife's shabby treatment of their son, Benedict Cumberbatch, trouncing the expected diva fireworks from Oscar nominees Streep and Julia Roberts. Director John Wells makes it eminently watchable, but with every crippling emotional issue from abuse and incest to infidelity covered by rote, it all comes across as risk-averse, over-baked and hollow.

How to watch

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Credits

Cast

rolename
Violet WestonMeryl Streep
Barbara WestonJulia Roberts
Bill FordhamEwan McGregor
Charles AikenChris Cooper
Jean FordhamAbigail Breslin
"Little" Charles AikenBenedict Cumberbatch
Karen WestonJuliette Lewis
Mattie Fae AikenMargo Martindale
SteveDermot Mulroney
Ivy WestonJulianne Nicholson
Beverly WestonSam Shepard

Crew

rolename
DirectorJohn Wells

Details

Theatrical distributor
Entertainment
Released on
2014-01-24
Language
English
Guidance
Swearing, drug abuse.
Available on
DVD and Blu-ray
Formats
Colour
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