8 February 2007 | Isaac5855
Brilliant performances anchor this warm family drama...
TWICE IN A LIFETIME is an emotionally-charged family drama that, despite a somewhat muddled screenplay, still works thanks to some solid gold performances. Gene Hackman plays a Seattle steelworker who loves the Seahawks and seems content with his life as he prepares for the wedding of his younger daughter (Ally Sheedy), but still feels something missing in his life. His private mid-life crises move him to leave his devoted wife (Ellen Burstyn) and begin a relationship with a local barmaid (Ann-Margret). His wife resigns herself to his decision but his elder daughter (Amy Madigan) does not and refuses to let Dad off the hook. The screenplay is safe and predictable, but what makes this film worth watching is the powerhouse performances. Hackman's quiet and powerful turn as a man dealing with being at a crossroad he doesn't know how to handle' Burstyn's beautifully-realized vulnerability as the woman who is at a loss as to what went wrong in her marriage and Madigan, in a performance that earned her an Oscar nomination, icy and gripping as the daughter who refuses to accept her parents' divorce. Watching these wonderful actors take you through the roller-coaster of emotions involved in the rending apart of a family, make this movie something very special.