Bright Leaves (image 1)

Screened as part of NZIFF 2004

Bright Leaves 2003

Directed by Ross McElwee

USA In English
107 minutes 35mm

Director, Screenplay, Photography

Editors

Ross McElwee
,
Mark Meatto

Festivals

Cannes, Toronto, New York 2003; Rotterdam 2004

Elsewhere

“Sherman’s March director Ross McElwee makes another witty, thoughtful and illuminating visit to his Southern roots in Bright Leaves. A rewardingly personal documentary in which the filmmaker deftly uses his specific family legacy as a jumping off point for wry ruminations on American history, the tobacco business, public health and cinematic license, this warmly engaging feature has a bright future indeed… With his engagingly low-key, sometimes self-deprecating commentary, McElwee welcomes the viewer into a homespun but by no means corny comfort zone where issues big and small, personal and historical, can be discussed in the same relaxed, free-associative manner.” — Todd McCarthy, Variety 

“McElwee is really an American humorist in a tradition that extends from Mark Twain through Garrison Keillor. Narrating the movie in the laid-back drawl of an affable Southern storyteller, he turns personal experience into a speculative personal mythology that is meant to be taken with a big grain of salt.” — Stephen Holden, NY Times