The Frontier: Anger as a Family Activity

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unnamedAfter a long estrangement, retiring Literature Professor and Activist, Sean (Max Gail) writes a passionate letter to his son Tennessee (Coleman Kelly) in an attempt to patch up some old emotional wounds. Sean is retiring and writing his biography and last series of lessons with his new assistant, Nina (Anastassia Sendyk). Nina has recently moved in to the professor’s house after a particularly bad breakup. Not knowing how to respond to his father, Tennesse leaves his job as ranch hand and comes home. Saying communication between the father and son is difficult is an understatement. Tennessee rails against his father, calling him an “old man” and making his time in the house as difficult as possible. Nina has enough and demands the two spend men time together finishing a bottle of whiskey and finally dumping all issues out into the open. The two must face the challenges of a cloudy past, all while Tennesse finds himself in love with Nina.

Max Gail and Coleman Kelly both portray incredibly strong characters, but neither show an ability to work well with the other. The father and son scenes feel more like a special episode of Maury than an actual estrangement between a father and son. The extremely pretty Nina, also stirs up some uncomfortable emotional heat, leading the viewer to have an uncomfortable knowledge that both father and son have less than innocent thoughts about their housemate. The plot is predictable at best and takes great joy in invoking painful emotions for those with open family wounds.

The Frontier encourages families to speak to one another before it is too late. Director Matt Rabinowitz helps remind a new generation that once you’ve lost your family, there’s no way to bring them back.

The Frontier opens in select Lo

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