Its hard to talk about Aaron Schneiders Get Low without considering the long career of Robert Duvall. The film is being hyped as a rejuvenation for the actor (much like Jeff Bridges Oscar win earlier this year), but thats all advertisement. The real draw is seeing Duvall in a lead role like this again, one thats completely tailored to his talents and tough-guy persona. As Felix Bush, a crusty old hermit with the nasty habit of attempting to shoot anyone who trespasses on his property (but with a good heart underneath the tough exterior, of course), Duvall makes a ridiculous character thoroughly believable.
At first glance the story is intriguing, no doubt thanks to it being reportedly true. A hermit living in a cabin in the Tennessee woods for almost 40 years becomes legend in a depression-era town, where hundreds of tall tales about him float among the populace. One day the hermit walks into town and offers a giant wad of cash to a funeral home to plan him a living funeral and invite everyone in the nearby area who has a story to tell about him. It sounds like a potentially morbid black comedy (and not a particularly inspired one, as Get Low shares a premise with The Living Wake, released earlier this summer), but the set-up is just window-dressing for a story of redemption.