Yet another indie film about a series of interconnected lives, Rodrigo García's movie is basically several short stories put together, with primary characters from previous episodes occasionally intruding as supporting players in the later ones. The protagonists are all women, and it's a formidable lineup -- Amy Brenneman, Glenn Close, Robin Wright Penn, Kathy Baker, Sissy Spacek, Molly Parker, Holly Hunter, Mary Kay Place, and the ubiquitous Dakota Fanning all feature prominently. Recurring themes include motherhood, thirst, aging, imprisonment, and death. The best take us places we don't expect -- the Brenneman segment, in which she attends the funeral of her deaf ex-husband's wife, reveals sign-language phrases they won't teach you in school -- while the worst (like the one with Lisa Gay Hamilton as the daughter of a philanderer) mine cliched emotional turf. Five or six lives might have felt more concise; nine test the patience a bit, though it is impressive that each is composed of a single Steadicam shot.
Director: Rodrigo Garcia
Writer: Rodrigo GarcÃa
Producer: Julie Lynn
Cast: Kathy Baker, Glenn Close, Stephen Dillane, Dakota Fanning, Holly Hunter, Jason Isaacs, Joe Mantegna, Ian McShane, Molly Parker and Robin Wright Penn