May 5, 2006
Director: David Jacobson
MPAA Rating: R (for violence, sexual content, language and drug use)
Screenwriter: David Jacobson
Starring: Edward Norton, Evan Rachel Wood, David Morse, Rory Culkin, Bruce Dern, Ellen Burstyn, Elizabeth Peña, Muse Watson
Copyright Holder: N/A
Official website: DownintheValleyfilm.com
Siblings Lonnie and Tobe live at the edge of the bleeding sprawl of the San Fernando Valley. One day, a mysterious horseman strolls into their lives. With his folksy-naïve manner and cowboy garb, Harlan Fairfax Carruthers initially evokes a bemused "Are you for real?" from one of their friends. But to Lonnie and Tobe, Harlan's alien behavior seems to be exactly what they need. Director David Jacobson brings a fresh perspective to the city and the ways it functions as a locus of both hopeful reinvention and dark violence. Enrique Chediak's' anamorphic widescreen cinematography uses the striking juxtapositions of the San Fernando Valley, where the Interstate brushes up against what little is left of the Wild West, to both comic and poignant effect. Remarkable central performances from Edward Norton and a revelatory Evan Rachel Wood cement "Down in the Valley" as both a classic American movie and a thoroughly independent vision.