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DARLING COMPANION

 
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At Theaters: 4/20/2012 On Video: 8/28/2012
Rated: PG-13 Length: 1 hr. 43 min.
Internet: Web Site Movie ID: 589984
Studio: Sony Pictures Classics
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Storyline Heading
On the side of a busy freeway, a woman finds the love, devotion, commitment, and courage she needs - all wrapped up in a bloodied stray dog who becomes her "darling companion." When the beloved canine goes missing, a shaggy-dog search adventure plays out, drawing together friends and family and rekindling a lifelong love.
DETAILED STORYLINE
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Movie Type (Genre) Heading
Comedy
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Cast and Crew Heading
Diane Keaton MORNING GLORY, MAD MONEY, BECAUSE I SAID SO
Kevin Kline THE CONSPIRATOR, NO STRINGS ATTACHED
Dianne Wiest RABBIT HOLE, PASSENGERS, SYNECDOCHE, NEW YORK
Richard Jenkins THE CABIN IN THE WOODS, THE RUM DIARY, HALL PASS
Wri/Dir: Lawrence Kasdan DREAMCATCHER, MUMFORD
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Production Notes Heading
Director's Statement
About The Production
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Content Heading
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this information.
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Critic's Review Heading

USA Today Full Review
Above Average 'Darling Companion' turns on the warm-and-fuzzies.

NY Post Full Review
Average Darling Companion'' doesn't amount to much more than a fairly painless way for the AARP set to spend an hour and a half watching a movie with stars their own age.

Note: The rating above is our interpretation of what the critic would give this movie based on their review. We are not affiliated with these critic's in any way.

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OPINION OVERVIEW
The following is the original "What's Worth Watching" write-up for this movie.

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D ETAILED S TORYLINE
BETH (Diane Keaton) and JOSEPH WINTER (Kevin Kline) are a long-married couple living comfortably in the Denver suburbs. Joseph, a successful, busy surgeon, is regarded by his wife as pompous and self-involved, while Beth, an empty-nester now that their daughters are grown, is considered high-strung and overly-emotional by her husband. While they're sometimes testy with each other, they're united in pride and pleasure in their family.

One wintry day, driving with daughter GRACE (Elisabeth Moss), Beth spots something on the side of the freeway and insists they pull over. Nestled in the roadside shrubbery is a dog - frightened, banged-up, but clear-eyed and responsive. With uncharacteristic boldness, the women coax and carry the injured stray to their car and take him to a vet. Not only is the dog saved, but he brings good fortune in the bargain: the handsome young vet, SAM (Jay Ali) locks eyes with Grace, and a romantic spark is kindled.

Before long the dog, aptly named Freeway, is a beloved family member. A year passes, and Grace and Sam are engaged to marry. The festive wedding is held at the family's lodge-style country cabin in the High Rockies. Once newlyweds and guests depart, Joseph and Beth are left to relax with a few stragglers: Joseph's sister PENNY (Dianne Wiest) and her new beau RUSSELL (Richard Jenkins); Penny's son BRYAN (Mark Duplass), who is also a surgeon in medical practice with his uncle Joseph; and the cabin's caretaker CARMEN (Ayelet Zurer), whose exotic beauty and accent lend her an alluring air of mystery. Beth and Joseph are unimpressed with the artlessly friendly Russell, worrying that Penny is being seduced by an opportunistic loser. Bryan, equally wary of Russell, becomes distracted by the lovely Carmen.

This cozy house party is thrown into crisis mode when Freeway, out for a woodland ramble with Joseph, bounds away after a deer. Joseph is relatively nonchalant about Freeway's disappearance - he's a dog, he'll find his way home - but Beth immediately launches a full-scale, all-hands search party that keeps up far into the night. The whole town goes on alert via radio announcements and reward flyers; they even summon the local SHERIFF (Sam Shepard) on his day off. A second day goes by with no sign of Freeway.

Beth is devastated, furious at Joseph, and inconsolable with worry that Freeway has perished.

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