Last week I had the wonderful opportunity to see an online preview of the independent film Mighty Fine, which premieres in select theaters May 25th, 2012. After the movie, I was lucky to participate in a live chat with the actors which was exciting and very informative.
Mighty Fine is based on writer/director Debbie Goodstein’s childhood experiences and shows the effects of being in a family where rage and unpredictable mood swings are a fact everyday life. The movie is set in the 1970s and tells a story of the Fine family who move from Brooklyn to New Orleans for the father’s business. You quickly get a sense of Joe Fine’s (Chazz Palminteri) sense of pride in his family but also his tendency to lash out in a moment’s notice. Joe’s wife, Stella (Andie MacDowell), defends her husband’s mood swings insisting that he takes care of the family so it should be excused. The two Fine daughters, Maddie and Natalie, are quite different from each other. The oldest is strong and confident, not afraid to speak her mind about the episodes from their father. The youngest is more fragile and somewhat forgiving of the father, more like her mother.
Throughout the movie, we see Joe Fine struggle with keeping his business afloat all the while hiding it from the family. It’s clear the Joe has a mental illness, as he reacts similar to someone with bi-polar disease. There was such a sadness in the family but also a resilience and a longing desire to be a happy family. I found the movie very touching and a bit close to home for me, as I have family members with similar disorders. Mental illness is extremely difficult on the family and I can only imagine how the person with the disorder must feel. I think if I identified with anyone in the movie it was the oldest daughter as I consider myself a strong woman who is not afraid to stand up and say what is true. Sometimes when you love someone, you have to tell them that they are wrong, that they are hurtful, and that they need to seek help.
To see Chazz Palminteri in such a complex role in an important independent film like Mighty Fine was a real pleasure. I hope you will go see Mighty Fine when it premieres in select theaters on May 25, 2012. You can check here to find a theater near you.
Disclosure: I participated in a campaign on behalf of Mom Central Consulting for Mighty Fine and the distributor. I received access to an online showing of the film and a promotional item to thank me for participating.