Prodigal Sons
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In this impressive personal documentary, filmmaker Kimberly Reed attempts to reconcile with her long-estranged brother Marc, with whom she's been a rival since childhood. Their paths diverged long ago: Marc was permanently debilitated in a car accident, while Kim left their small-town roots on a journey of self-discovery. Full of twists and turns involving Hollywood royalty and sexual and gender identities, high school reunions in Montana and family reunions in Croatia, Prodigal Sons sensitively examines family bonds and questions if we can ever truly reinvent ourselves.
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Rotten Tomatoes Score: 89%

Critic Reviews from Rotten Tomatoes

"A film that will fascinate inquisitive viewers on multiple levels."
‑ Todd McCarthy, Variety
"Kimberly Reed started out to make a movie about starting over, but then life got in the way. It didn't make her job harder. It made the movie better."
‑ Michael O'Sullivan, Washington Post
"This film should be shown to every parent of a gay child."
‑ Glenn Dunks, Glenn Dunks
"A multilayered portrait of immense physical, emotional and psychological change."
‑ Nick Schager, Lessons of Darkness
"An exceptional film...(that helps) illuminate the often painful experience of people trying to move on from dark personal and family pasts."
‑ Fr. Chris Carpenter, Movie Dearest
"At the heart of Prodigal Sons, a family drama in the form of a succinct, eloquent personal journal, is a sibling rivalry whose reverberations touch upon the very essence of human identity..."
‑ Sheri Linden, Los Angeles Times
"The problem with family-diary documentaries is that some families have too much drama for just one movie."
‑ Ty Burr, Boston Globe
"While Reed's own self-exposure shows insight, her presentation of her brother's suffering comes across as an unprocessed spectacle of misery that hasn't been adequately thought out."
‑ Nicolas Rapold, Film Comment Magazine
"Some of the footage is harrowing, some of it moving, but all of it fearlessly real and affecting."
‑ Sean Axmaker, Turner Classic Movies Online
"Prodigal Sons is crazily overstuffed with material, but the material is so strong and so endlessly surprising I can't blame Reed for her reluctance to leave anything out."
‑ Chris Hewitt (St. Paul), St. Paul Pioneer Press
"A consistently generous film."
‑ Liam Lacey, Globe and Mail
"Sometimes we forget that when documentary filmmakers begin a project, they don't always know what they'll be filming because, to state the obvious, real life doesn't work from a script."
‑ David Wiegand, San Francisco Chronicle
"Documents a moment in a few very specific lives that anyone with a heart and mind can understand and recognise."
‑ Tim Brayton, Antagony & Ecstasy
"This combination of amazing coincidences, sibling tensions and identity crises is a natural fit for the documentary form."
‑ Stan Hall, Oregonian
"In an era of pop documentaries that reduce their subjects to gimmicky setups and patronizing lessons, Prodigal Sons is a near-profound palate cleanser."
‑ Rob Humanick, Projection Booth
More reviews for Prodigal Sons on Rotten Tomatoes