Aurora Borealis
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Duncan (Joshua Jackson), a depressed twentysomething living in a rundown section of Minneapolis, has just lost another job. He has another source of income, letting his brother use his apartment for extramarital trysts. On a rare visit to his grandparents, Ronald (Donald Sutherland) and Ruth (Louise Fletcher), Duncan meets Kate (Juliette Lewis), Ronald's spirited home health-care worker. Later, when Duncan learns that there's an opening for a handyman in the building, he takes the job. He begins to spend more time with his grandparents, hanging out with Ronald, who, among his many… More
Rotten Tomatoes Score: 69%

Critic Reviews from Rotten Tomatoes

"Seems designed to reward Jackson with his biggest adult part to date, though it doesn't give the Vancouver, B.C., native a lot to work with."
‑ John Hartl, Seattle Times
"A sensitive and touching story about a distressed family and the emotional glue that holds it together."
‑ Jeff Strickler, Minneapolis Star Tribune
"What holds Aurora Borealis together is the complex and very realistic relationships between the characters."
‑ Felix Gonzalez Jr., DVD Review
"The script offers neither character revelations nor plot twists. It unfolds by the numbers, like the product of an amateur screenwriter's salon."
‑ Bill White, Seattle Post-Intelligencer
"Predictable but not preachy, its likeable types quirky and familiar, 'Aurora Borealis' is a good if undemanding watch."
‑ Donald J. Levit, ReelTalk Movie Reviews
"Good Will Hunting but in the Midwest and minus the tortured math genius, psychological breakthroughs, and convincing local color."
‑ Wesley Morris, Boston Globe
"Most successful in capturing the emotional elements of its story, the film relies on its excellent cast to balance out sketchily drawn characters and the unfortunate obviousness of its plot."
‑ Kevin Crust, Los Angeles Times
"What looks like a goopy, disease-of-the-week movie about Alzheimer's turns out to be a surprisingly well crafted, beautifully acted movie."
‑ Jeffrey M. Anderson, Combustible Celluloid
"A fair-to-middling coming-of-age tale [is] played by a stellar cast in an unusual locale [but] never escapes seeming rather ordinary."
‑ Frank Swietek, One Guy's Opinion
"The real surprise here is Lewis, who seems to have finally hit on a role that balances her usual flakiness with smarts and an offbeat poignancy, and she delivers the strongest work of her adult career."
‑ Ken Fox, TV Guide's Movie Guide
"Every bromide, plot twist and stock character arrives right on time and, to give director James Burke his due, function as well as they ever have."
‑ Neva Chonin, San Francisco Chronicle
"Aurora Borealis -- yes, that title eventually comes home to roost -- doesn't offend in any way, but it's so self-consciously quaint, so unwaveringly 'nice,' that you nearly wish it did."
‑ Scott Foundas, L.A. Weekly
"[A] tough, sweet and buoyantly funny drama about how we all grow up in different ways and on different timetables."
‑ Frank Lovece, Film Journal International
"Boyd's observant script (Minneapolis guy: 'St. What?' Kate: 'St. Paul. It's on the other side of the river.') and fine acting smooth over most of the rough edges."
‑ Chris Hewitt (St. Paul), St. Paul Pioneer Press
"Fine acting distinguishes Aurora Borealis, a moderately affecting seriocomic character study marred by a weak, tidily resolved third act."
‑ Timothy Knight,
More reviews for Aurora Borealis on Rotten Tomatoes