Picks and Pans Review: Blue Car

UPDATED 05/19/2003 at 01:00 AM EDT Originally published 05/19/2003 at 01:00 AM EDT

Agnes Bruckner, David Strathairn, Margaret Colin
Critic's Choice

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This delicate drama is heartbreakingly perfect in story, tone and performance. First-time director-writer Karen Moncrieff follows Meg, a sensitive 18-year-old who's torn up over her parent's breakup. In Blue Car, she misses her absent dad (the title is based on a poem Meg writes about seeing him drive off); resents her hardworking, preoccupied mom (Colin); and reaches out for support to a sympathetic teacher (Strathairn). Bruckner is a find, full of pent-up hurt and sexuality, while that redoubtable duo, Strathairn and Colin, valuably contribute multihued portrayals of adults grappling with problems of their own. (R)

BOTTOM LINE: A moving ride

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