Monday, February 28, 2011
Get Low is based on a true story which occurred during the depression in the 1930s. Felix (Bush) Breazeale, a backwoods Tennessee recluse, had a funeral party before his death. It was a national sensation featured in Life Magazine, and over 10,000 people came to the funeral party.
Get Low is a poetic story which combines elements of comedy, tragedy and drama. The film was directed by first-time director Aaron Schnider, who also wrote the screenplay. Schnider is known as a cinematographer, and it shows on every frame in this film. Get Low is beautifully photographed and exudes Southern atmosphere.
Frank Quinn is portrayed by Bill Murray, who is the local undertaker in need of business. Apparently no one in town has been dying. Quinn is more than willing to help Bush out, especially when he sees a huge wad of cash. Quinn’s assistant, Buddy Robinson portrayed by Lucas Black, is more interested in the reason why someone would want to do this in the first place. He seeks answers. Why would Bush choose a life of solitude away from the world for over 40 years?
The question is does Bush really want to hear what people have to say about him or does he have another motive? To increase the excitement and interest of the funeral party, Bush will give up his prime virgin land at his death, in a lottery in which each participant will put up five bucks to enter.
Get Low is so much more than a movie about a tough old man who is trying to come to terms with his own mortality. This is a spiritual film, a quest to reveal dark secrets and to seek release from past sins and guilt. At its heart are redemption and reconciliation. Sometimes we just don’t feel that we have the right to seek forgiveness so we make our own prison. These are the complex issues that fuel Get Low.
One actor that I hope more people recognize is Bill Cobbs. He’s been in the business for over 35 years but often doesn’t receive the recognition he deserves. Get Low debuted at the Toronto International Film Festival and was acquired by Sony Classics. It grossed over $9 million at the box office. Obviously, there is an audience for films like Get Low. If you are looking for a film from the heart that’s truthful about life and the need for forgiveness and God’s redemptive power, then I wholeheartedly recommend Get Low.
Look for it on DVD. It is currently available and not too hard to find.