This Is Martin Bonner
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This Is Martin Bonner
The striking sophomore film of writer/director Chad Hartigan, THIS IS MARTIN BONNER is a warm and perceptive meditation on friendship, human connection and getting a second chance at life. Fifty-something Martin Bonner (Paul Eenhorn) leaves his old life behind and relocates to Reno, where he finds work helping released prisoners transition to life on the outside, while trying his hand at speed dating and passing time as a soccer referee on weekends. Meanwhile, Travis Holloway (Richmond Arquette) has just been released from prison after serving 12 years. Surprising both of them, Travis and… More

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Rotten Tomatoes Score: 93%

Critic Reviews from Rotten Tomatoes

"This Is Martin Bonner takes a magnifying glass to everyday goodness and lingering pain, illuminating their contours and complexities but pulling away before the movie can ever burst into sentimental flame."
‑ Robert Abele, Los Angeles Times
"Patience is privileged, nothing is forced, and by the end of this quietly devastating character study, the ordinary has become extraordinary."
‑ Keith Uhlich, Time Out New York
"Inspiring in a way that movies too often aren't, in that it provides a realistic yet optimistic vision of how someone can positively affect the world around them"
‑ Dan Schindel, Movie Mezzanine
"... exquisite character development, observant filmmaking, and storytelling that just might change the way people live."
‑ Jeffrey Overstreet, Christianity Today
"At its best, with its quiet, ominous pace in the early going and its economical distribution of information throughout, the film is reminiscent of Todd Haynes's Safe."
‑ Jordan Cronk, Slant Magazine
"This contemplative drama draws strength from day-to-day ordinariness and a terrific lead performance from Paul Eenhoorn, yet sadly falls short."
‑ Joe Neumaier, New York Daily News
"By calling on his leads to underplay nearly every moment, Hartigan calls into question our deeply ingrained instinct, as moviegoers, to witness a steady parade of amped-up emotions."
‑ Chuck Wilson, Village Voice
"Thankfully it avoids the sentimentality of so many other similar redemption indie pics."
‑ Dennis Schwartz, Ozus' World Movie Reviews
"Chad Hartigan's This is Martin Bonner is a refreshing example of stark realism, minus the grit and melodrama that tends to muddy films of its ilk."
‑ Amy R. Handler, Film Threat
"The detail is precise, as are the performances. These may not be people you would care to see a film about, but seeing it I can't imagine that you wouldn't be moved to care about them."
‑ M. Faust, ArtVoice
"Mr. Eenhoorn (whose patient expressions here suggest a kindly priest) gives his character the shy charm of palpable decency."
‑ Nicolas Rapold, New York Times
"Rigorously subdued in performance and tone, this low-key character portrait is distinguished by its empathetic honesty."
‑ David Rooney, Hollywood Reporter
"A lovely film makes use of fundamental Christian belief, and of lonely men in their autumn years, and of second chances forced upon us, subjects not generally celebrated in Hollywood."
‑ Burl Burlingame, Honolulu Star-Advertiser
"Somewhere far beyond the hoary parables of most faith-based films and the brutal body-blows of prison flicks soars This Is Martin Bonner, an understated drama with small words and big ideas."
‑ Andrew Lapin, The Dissolve
"The rare contemporary film about Christian behavior that doesn't go out of its way to announce its secularity, it's equally unpatronizing in its sharp articulation of loneliness in middle age and beyond."
‑ Guy Lodge, HitFix
More reviews for This Is Martin Bonner on Rotten Tomatoes