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Scott Foundas’s “Road Movie” Oozes Midwestern Rooftop Daydreaming

In response to Scott Foundas’s 968‑word review of Nebraska on Variety

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Scott Foundas’ review from France, “Nebraska Review: Alexander Payne’s Finely Etched Road Movie,” is a classy composition that educates and stimulates the cinematic mind.

Foundas writes with such Nebraskan grace in Road Movie that one may question if the review was actually written in France, and not on top of a Midwestern roof while contemplating life. The writing is gentle, and allows one to dive into the deep end of the film pool and swim around in references to Akira Kurosawa, Peter Bogdanovich and Preston Sturges. One may think “Is this an online film course?” but then snap back into it as Foundas dishes out sweet knowledge of the cantankerous old coots of the film.

Road Movie is an excellent piece for those interested in the techniques of director Alexander Payne. Foundas succeeds by noting the longing and regret of characters, and also delivers a hearty amount of critique on the leads. Fans of Bruce Dern will be pleased by the attention given to the actor, and Will Forte is certainly not left behind. The critic even makes a Tom Cruise Rainman comparison with Forte’s character David, which is both exciting and effective.

There is a healthy amount of plot summary in Road Movie, but perhaps too much as Foundas blatantly references the final act of the film. It’s not a spoiler, however 95% of critics have stayed clear of offering such specific details since the critic wrote from Cannes.


Quality of Writing Quality of Argument Spoiler Avoidance Presentation