Gone Country! [2 Discs] [DVD]

Seven entertainers attempt to compose and perform an original country song while living together in Nashville.
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Overview

Synopsis

Songwriter
A good ol' boy comedy-drama, Songwriter flashes enough substance between the songs and the hijinks to qualify as a sometimes astute look into the darker areas of the music business. Willie Nelson plays Doc Jenkins, the title character, who conspires with longtime pal Blackie Buck (Kris Kristofferson) to turn the tables on a shady promoter, Rodeo Rocky (Richard Sarafian), who has Doc signed to a contract that is one step short of indentured servitude. Lesley Ann Warren plays Gilda, an up-and-coming country chanteuse whom Doc is tutoring. The rest of the supporting cast is a mix of veteran character players (Rip Torn, Melinda Dillon) and musicians associated with Nelson (Mickey Raphael, Bee Spears, Jody Payne, Johnny Gimble). There are also plenty of musical numbers featuring Nelson and Kristofferson (solo and duets). The musicians/actors went on to co-star in two TV movies, A Pair of Aces and Another Pair of Aces, essentially playing the same kind of good ol' boy characters, though as detectives, not songwriters. ~ Tom Wiener, Rovi

Bloodworth
A nomadic country musician returns to his estranged family in Tennessee after 40 years on the road, and finds that the damage he did by leaving is nothing compared to the chaos he's stirred up by returning. Four decades ago, E.F. Bloodworth (Kris Kristofferson) walked away from his wife and three sons, and never looked back. Today, his ex-wife, Julia (Frances Conroy), has suffered a mental collapse, and his three sons, Brady (W. Earl Brown), Boyd (Dwight Yoakam), and Warren (Val Kilmer), have been consumed by rage. In the midst of this familial storm, E.F. forges an unlikely bond with his good-hearted grandson Fleming (Reece Daniel Thompson), who refuses to be defined by his grandfather's mistake, and resists the festering anger that has destroyed his family. But when Fleming falls in love with Raven (Hilary Duff), the mere presence of the boy's reviled grandfather threatens to cast a dark shadow of dysfunction over a whole new generation. ~ Jason Buchanan, Rovi

Don't Come Knocking
Director Wim Wenders and writer Sam Shepard, who collaborated on the award-winning film Paris, Texas, once again join forces for this dark drama of a man trying to turn over a new leaf late in life. Howard Spence (Sam Shepard) is a veteran actor who has been a popular Western star since the mid-'70s. Spence's onscreen image as a strong, principled lawman is a severe contrast to his life off the set, which has been dominated by drinking, drugs, and promiscuous womanizing. However, Spence has begun to find his hedonistic life a shallow existence, and one day, in the midst of filming his latest movie, he simply hops on his horse and rides away, eventually making his way to the small Nevada town where his mother lives. Mother (Eva Marie Saint) has little interest in seeing her wayward son after so many years, but she does share a recently discovered bit of information with him -- one of Spence's former girlfriends stopped by with word that she had given birth to his son years before. Spence borrows his father's old car and drives to Butte, MT, where he finds Doreen (Jessica Lange), the woman who was his lover years ago. Doreen runs a tavern where her son, Earl (Gabriel Mann), plays for the locals with his rock band; Spence is in fact Earl's father, but the young man has no interest in meeting his biological father, and shuts out Spence as the actor tries to get to know him. As Spence struggles to find some sort of familial connection in Butte, he makes friends with a young woman named Sky (Sarah Polley), only to discover she was also fathered by him during his rowdy younger days. Don't Come Knocking's distinguished supporting cast includes Tim Roth, George Kennedy, Fairuza Balk, Julia Sweeney, and Tim Matheson. ~ Mark Deming, Rovi

Falling From Grace
Rocker John Mellencamp both directed and starred in this drama about a well-known musician who returns to his old home town, opening a number of old wounds in the process. Bud Parks (Mellencamp) is a country-rock star who's feeling burned out after a long stretch on the road and heads back to his hometown in Indiana for some downtime with his family and old friends for the occasion of his father's birthday. But after arriving in Indiana with his wife, Alice (Mariel Hemingway), and daughter, Terri Jo (Melissa Ann Hackman), Bud gets a reminder that the Parks family is no more happy or stable than it has ever been. Bud's wealthy father, Speck (Claude Akins), is still a self-centered womanizer; Grandpa (Dub Taylor) is a foul and hateful man; and Bud's half-brother, Ramey (Larry Crane) -- the result of one of Speck's many extramarital affairs -- is much better adjusted than his full brother, Parker (Brent Huff), whose loyalty to Speck has turned him into a spiritless lackey. Parker also happens to be married to P.J. (Kay Lenz), who was Bud's girlfriend in high school, and as Alice sits on the sidelines attracting the unwanted attentions of Speck, Bud finds himself falling into an affair with P.J. As he faces his own guilt and the mixed emotions of his family and friends at his return, Bud realizes he's more like his father than he ever wanted to be. Novelist and screenwriter Larry McMurtry wrote Falling From Grace for Mellencamp, even spending time with the singer in Indiana to get a better feel for the locations; songwriter and Mellencamp collaborator John Prine also appears and contributes to the soundtrack. ~ Mark Deming, Rovi

Cast & Crew

  • Willie Nelson
    Willie Nelson - Doc Jenkins
  • Kris Kristofferson
    Kris Kristofferson - Blackie Buck
  • Melinda Dillon
    Melinda Dillon - Honey Carder
  • Rip Torn
    Rip Torn - Dino McLeish
  • Lesley Ann Warren
    Lesley Ann Warren - Gilda
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