State And Main 2000 | Movie

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This witty, low-key comedy about what happens when a Hollywood production team descends on the sleepy town of Waterford, VT, finds David Mamet in an uncharacteristically mellow mood. The Old Mill, a historical drama penned by na├»ve playwri… (more)

Released: 2000

Rating: R

User Rating:5 out of 5 (2 ratings)

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Reviewed by Maitland McDonagh
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This witty, low-key comedy about what happens when a Hollywood production team

descends on the sleepy town of Waterford, VT, finds David Mamet in an

uncharacteristically mellow mood. The Old Mill, a historical drama

penned by naïve playwright Joseph Turner White (Philip Seymour Hoffman)

already has a troubled production history, having been run out of its previous

location in New Hampshire after lecherous star Bob Barrenger (Alec Baldwin)

put the moves on an underage local girl. Now White has to start rewriting to

accommodate the fact that Waterford doesn't have an old mill, and having

already built one on the abandoned location, there's no money to construct

another. Director Walt Price (William H. Macy) is busy catering to his

temperamental stars — especially starlet Claire Wellesley (Sarah Jessica

Parker), who's suddenly refusing to do her nude scene — and producer

Marty Rossen (David Paymer) is fretting about the budget. The good people of

Waterford are having their heads turned by all this Hollywood glamour in their

midst — the mayor's (Charles Durning) snobbish wife (Patti LuPone) is obsessed with planning a swanky soiree for the visitors, and level-headed Ann

(Rebecca Pidgeon) must cancel the play she's directing because the town's

amateur thespians all want to be a movie extras. But she doesn't really mind;

in her own practical way, she's fallen for White, much to the dismay of her

fiance (Clark Gregg), an ambitious local politician. The trouble really starts

after Barrenger has an automobile accident at the corner of State and Main

Streets, taking out the town's new crossing light. That's not the bad part,

though. The bad part is that there was a star-struck teenager (Julia Stiles)

in the car with him. Mamet's jabs at Tinseltown's silken ruthlessness are

quietly pointed, and the ensemble cast — even the brittle and sometimes

annoying Pidgeon (Mamet's wife) — is brilliant.

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