Land Ho! (2014)
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Also Known As: Lay of the Land
Opened: 07/11/2014 Limited
|Royal||07/11/2014 - 08/07/2014||28 days|
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|Village East||07/25/2014 - 07/31/2014||7 days|
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|Kendall Square||08/15/2014 - 09/04/2014||21 days|
Trailer: Click for trailer
Rated: R for some language, sexual references and drug use.
A pair of 60-something ex-brothers-in-law sets off on a road trip through Iceland, hoping to reclaim their youth. Their picaresque adventures, from trendy Reykjavik to rugged outback, are a throwback to classic bawdy road comedies as well as a candid exploration of aging, loneliness, and friendship.
Back when they were brothers-in-law, married to two sisters, MITCH (Earl Lynn Nelson) and COLIN (Paul Eenhoorn) were close friends, but they drifted apart as Mitch and his wife divorced and Colin's wife died. Now Mitch, a retired surgeon who can't quite admit to being retired, recruits a reluctant Colin on a holiday to Iceland--just the ticket to perk up a pair who have endured their share of disappointments but still have a spirit of adventure in them. Brassy, relentlessly cheery, and prone to colorfully profane language ("...this is so delicious it's like angels pissin' on your tongue!") Southerner Mitch is the live wire of the duo. Colin, a more reserved Australian, is picking up the pieces after a second marriage gone sour. For both men, aging, loneliness, and disenchantment are silent adversaries to be countered with gumption. Women are much on the radar during their travels: in upscale Reykjavik, they hit the nightclubs with Mitch's much younger first-cousin-once-removed ELLEN (Karrie Crouse) and her friend JANET (Elizabeth McKee), who happen to be traveling through at the same time. Even though Mitch, who is something of a Dapper Dan, disapproves of the unrevealing outfits worn by the ladies (Ph.D candidates both), a good time, of sorts, is had by all. As their rented SUV pilots them deeper into the Icelandic hinterlands, Colin and Mitch encounter fellow adventurers, get on each others' nerves, play movie trivia games, get lost on the moonless moors, grouse about their sons, smoke pot, speak of regrets, and marvel at Iceland's otherworldly beauty. The vast, haunting landscapes--moss-coated cliffs, fog-shrouded mountains, geothermal pools--form a primordial Eden, the perfect backdrop for the friends' escapades. And as Mitch exclaims when Colin's spirits flag, "Don't get that Sunday afternoon attitude--good times are still a-comin'!"--a testament to the fact that joie de vivre can replenish us at any age.
LAND HO! is about getting older. Colin and Mitch, both disappointed by their work and unsuccessful relationships, take to foreign parts in order to escape the isolation they feel. Once friends, they have drifted apart over the years. Each of them has lost the people closest to them and each is looking for some kind of connection. That sets the stage for turning loose two guys who sometimes can't stand each other, but who desperately need each other.
Like many of us, Colin and Mitch strive to find happiness in exploring new territories, connecting to the land, and briefly existing in another life. These men want to escape their circumstances, to feel alive and invigorated, but find that, no matter how far they are from home, the grass is always greener. It's hard to fully appreciate the moment when one is right in the thick of it. This strange human contradiction is equally humorous and heartbreaking, much like Colin and Mitch's story. When comedy arises from people genuinely interacting with each other and their environment, it does more than generate laughter. It lets us empathize with characters who feel like real people. It lets viewers figure out why characters do the things they do. It can make us nervous and uncomfortable, as with the more humorous moments of our real lives.
The actors who play Colin and Mitch, Paul Eenhoorn and Earl Lynn Nelson, are two very distinct personalities. Paul is a genial Australian-American who has spent the second half of his life in Seattle, Washington. Earl Lynn is a man with a rich history of good living and tall tales of Kentucky and New Orleans. More than anything we want comedy to arise from sincerity and sincerity to arise from comedy. We can't think of any two actors better equipped for this than Paul and Earl Lynn.
-- Martha Stephens & Aaron Katz