Craig Morrison (James Cromwell) and his wife Irene (Genevieve Bujold) live in rural New Brunswick, Canada on the large property they’ve owned for years. But, as Irene is mentally and physically deteriorating, Craig needs to find a solution. He starts a new project – building a small, one story house for the two of them. On a neighbour’s advice, he applies for a building permit and gets tied up in the red tape and bureaucracy that comes with it. Eventually, he is facing jail for not meeting codes despite years of knowledge and experience of building.
This is an extremely beautiful and moving film. Craig and Irene are so delightful, still deeply in love after so many years. It is hard to tell what is more frustrating in the film – the wife who is aware of her growing dementia; the husband who is desperately trying to find a way to make their lives work; or the mind-numbing, illogical paperwork. I think the building of the house plot was the focus of the film, but it was the dementia plot which I found more engaging. Though, having said that, the film handled much of the early stages of dementia quite gently and only dipped into the deeper, more distressing aspects of the disease.
James Cromwell won a Canadian Screen Award for his performance in Still Mine. The film was nominated for a six other Canadian Screen awards including Best Motion Picture, and received second place in the Audience Award for Best Narrative Feature at the Palm Springs International Film Festival.
Still Mine is screening across Melbourne from Thursday June 6.