Sling Blade

Sometimes a hero comes from the most unlikely place
Sometimes a hero comes from the most unlikely place
D: Billy Bob Thornton
Miramax/Shooting Gallery (Brandon Rosser & David L. Bushell)
US 1996
136 mins


W: Billy Bob Thornton [adapted from his short film screenplay "Some Call It A Sling Blade"]
DP: Barry Markowitz
Ed: Hughes Winborne
Mus: Daniel Lanois

Billy Bob Thornton (Karl Childers), Dwight Yoakam (Doyle Hargraves), J.T. Walsh (Charles Bushman), John Ritter (Vaughan Cunningham), Lucas Black (Frank Wheatley), Natalie Canderday (Linda Wheatley), Robert Duvall (Mr. Childers)

Adapted from a short film called "Some Folks Call It A Sling Blade" also written by Billy Bob Thornton, this movie provided his big break as writer, director and star. 
Thornton plays Karl Childers, a simple man recently released from a mental hospital where he spent 25 years after killing his mother and her lover. 
Finding difficulty re-entering society, he befriends a young boy (Lucas Black) and his mother who allow him to live in their garage, much to the malign of the mother's thuggish boyfriend (Dwight Yoakam).
All the cast are excellent, but it's Billy Bob Thornton's performance that make this a fascinating watch. Karl is such a passive character, but you can't help but sympathise with him, despite the opening scene where he confesses the murder of his mother to an up-and-coming newspaper reporter.
A stirring drama which I'd heavily recommend. Billy Bob Thornton will never better this.
Billy Bob Thornton in Sling Blade
Billy Bob Thornton in Sling Blade