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Garden State

  • Drama
  • 2003
  • Zach Braff
  • 98 mins
  • 15

Summary

Comedy drama written and directed by Scrubs star Zach Braff, and co-starring Natalie Portman. Troubled TV actor Andrew Largeman has been living in LA for nearly a decade, numbed by a steady diet of antidepressants. Though estranged from his father, he returns to his New Jersey home for his mother's funeral and at last begins to face up to his personal demons.

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Review

A star rating of 4 out of 5.

The puppy-dog charm and sharp comic timing of Scrubs star Zach Braff are very much to the fore in this, his first major leading role. But it's his talents behind the camera as writer and director that really impress. The story is familiar enough: an actor is forced to re-examine his rather empty, aimless life when he returns to his home town in New Jersey for the funeral of his mother. But Braff's thoughtful, mature script neatly sidesteps most of the obvious clichés, while as a director he shows a fine eye for offbeat composition. The performances are uniformly excellent too, particularly Natalie Portman as the quirky local girl that Braff befriends, and Peter Sarsgaard as his old grave-digging schoolfriend. It falters near the end, but this is still a fine directorial debut.

How to watch

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Credits

Cast

rolename
Andrew LargemanZach Braff
Gideon LargemanIan Holm
Dr CohenRon Leibman
DiegoMethod Man
SamNatalie Portman
MarkPeter Sarsgaard
CarolJean Smart
OliviaAnn Dowd
AlbertDenis O'Hare
KennyMichael Weston
TimJim Parsons
Aunt Sylvia LargemanJackie Hoffman
DanaAmy Ferguson
TitembayAto Essandoh
Restaurant ManagerGeorge C Wolfe

Crew

rolename
DirectorZach Braff

Details

Theatrical distributor
Buena Vista
Released on
2004-12-10
Languages
English
Guidance
Swearing, drug abuse and sex scenes.
Available on
DVD and Blu-ray
Formats
Colour
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