The Straight Story

Film, Comedy
  • 5 out of 5 stars
(1user review)
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The Straight Story
Lynch gets humanist - and produces a gem. The title has multiple resonance: based on fact, it charts the journey through the empty Midwestern plains embarked on by elderly Iowan Alvin Straight (Farnsworth), who to see his ailing brother attempts to cover 350 miles on a motorised lawnmower. Atypically for the director, it's also told straight, in naturalistic, linear fashion, but for all that the elegant, faintly formal compositions and camera movements (courtesy Freddie Francis), the expert and subtle use of sound and music, and the wry, gently humorous take on the absurdities of small town life make the film recognisably Lynchian. Farnsworth's easy, twinkle eyed charm is a winner all the way, but it's finally the film's deceptive simplicity and unabashed warmth that make it one of Lynch's most artistically and emotionally satisfying movies.

By: GA

Release details

Duration: 111 mins

Cast and crew

Director: David Lynch
Screenwriter: Mary Sweeney, John Roach
Cast: Everett McGill
John Farley
Harry Dean Stanton
Richard Farnsworth
Sissy Spacek

Average User Rating

5 / 5

Rating Breakdown

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O. Gordon
Tastemaker

This is a great film. An old man hears of his brother's health issues and decides he has to go and see him. The catch? Seems his only way of getting there is on his trusty lawnmower. It ticks along at it's own slow pace, always giving you those extra seconds to linger on what's said or done. The characters are brilliantly thought out even if some border on being caricatures and the vast open spaces are a far throw from busy old London. 


Richard Farnsworth's performance is award worthy. That's not to sell the rest of the cast short but he really carries the film. He can say so much by doing so little. He's not with us any longer, so pay homage to man by enjoying this film. It might not blow your socks off but it is a fantastic portrayal of the smaller realities in life that are normally passed by.