The Last Rites of Joe May | Chicago Reader

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Rated NR · 102 minutes · 2011

Released from the hospital after a seven-week battle with pneumonia, an aging tough guy (Dennis Farina) returns to his apartment on Chicago's near west side and discovers that his landlord has tossed all his belongings and rented his unit to a single mother and her little girl. ("I thought you were dead," shrugs the landlord, uttering the movie's most repeated line.) With only a few hundred bucks standing between the old man and the street, he accepts the mother's offer to share the apartment temporarily and winds up grouchily bonding with the girl and valiantly protecting the mother from her abusive boyfriend, a police detective. New York writer-director Joe Maggio has made some good Cassavetes-style indies (Virgil Bliss, Milk + Honey), but this male weepie is ridden with cliches (Farina's character tends to a pigeon coop on his roof, for God's sake) and climaxes with a predictable act of self-abnegation. With Gary Cole.
Director: Joe Maggio
Cast: Dennis Farina, Jamie Allman, Meredith Droeger, Ian Barford, Chelcie Ross and Gary Cole

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