O&A movie columnist Mark Fields’ quick take on the latest releases
Well Done but Well Worn
Sean Penn directs and stars in this character study of a grifter father and his devoted but sorely tested daughter. Penn has demonstrated a flair for well-made and offbeat stories in his occasional directorial forays, and in Flag Day, he again shows a deft hand with the acting part of the whole project. It doesn’t hurt that he has cast his own daughter Dylan as the daughter in the film. Unfortunately, aside from the convincing performances, Flag Day feels disappointingly familiar. Not only do I feel like I have seen this movie before (in a better version), I also feel like I have seen Penn play this character. I’ve even heard the same understated acoustic score. With Flag Day, familiarity doesn’t breed contempt, just resigned disappointment.