Down in the Valley
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A romance between a teenage girl and a thirtysomething drifter takes the young woman down a dangerous and unexpected path in this independent drama. Tobe (Evan Rachel Wood) is a pretty 18-year-old whose father, Wade (David Morse), is the sheriff of a town in California's San Fernando Valley. Tobe is driving to the beach with some friends when she stops at a filling station and meets gas jockey Harlan (Edward Norton), who dresses like a cowpoke and claims to have recently relocated to Los Angeles from South Dakota. Harlan is immediately and obviously taken with Tobe, and when she asks him… More
Rotten Tomatoes Score: 52%

Critic Reviews from Rotten Tomatoes

"Both actors work hard to give this disturbing crime story some flavor and substance, but the narrative is overextended and poorly organized."
‑ Jonathan Rosenbaum, Chicago Reader
"Even if this drama from David Jacobson can't quite cover all the territory the director-writer is looking to survey, it still's one of the most original movies in a long time."
‑ Terry Lawson, Detroit Free Press
"Jacobson examines the life and death of the western and its incompatibility with the youth of today ... a fascinating, yet slightly off-balance, mix of tribute and scrutiny."
‑ Christopher Campbell, Cinematical
‑ Walter Chaw, Film Freak Central
"The more you know about it the less likable it becomes."
‑ Dennis Schwartz, Ozus' World Movie Reviews
"Strange but compelling."
‑ Dave Calhoun, Time Out
"Jacobson kicks up a lot of dust here, but as it begins to settle, the movie becomes more and more muddled."
‑ Robert Denerstein, Denver Rocky Mountain News
"The values of past and present collide in this beautifully shot, finely acted reexamination of the American Dream."
‑ Anton Bitel, Film4
"When the story disintegrates into the gunfight at the 'I'm-not-okay-corral', it totally loses anything it had going for it."
‑ Cherryl Dawson and Leigh Ann Palone,
"The movie does not waste the performances, but the screenplay could have served them better."
‑ John J. Puccio, Movie Metropolis
"It aims to be a Badlands for a new generation. It's closer to The O.C. with horses."
‑ Roger Moore, Orlando Sentinel
"Norton sells it, as far as all of this can possibly go. Even if you doubt some of the action, you never doubt the existence of Harlan, a man out of time and out of options."
‑ Michael Booth, Denver Post
"A tale which, apart from its basic conceptual kinship to classic western films, is wholly original and deeply prescient about the darker shoals of human nature."
‑ David Noh, Film Journal International
"A cautionary tale about the dangers of casual sex, or even casual friendships with strangers."
‑ Robert Roten, Laramie Movie Scope
"Edward Norton and Evan Rachel Wood turn in strong lead performances, but their talent alone isn't enough to set David Jacobson's sun-bleached, modern-day Western on fire."
‑ Betsy Bozdech,
More reviews for Down in the Valley on Rotten Tomatoes