A beautifully acted drama with steadily cumulative force, “Hit the Road” opens May 20 at the University of Nebraska–Lincoln’s Mary Riepma Ross Media Arts Center.
Also showing is “Petite Maman.”
“Hit the Road” takes the tradition of the Iranian road-trip movie and adds unexpected twists and turns. It follows a family of four – two middle-aged parents and their sons, one a taciturn adult, the other an ebullient 6-year-old – as they drive across the Iranian countryside. Over the course of the trip, they bond over memories of the past, grapple with fears of the unknown and fuss over their sick dog. Unspoken tensions arise and the film builds emotional momentum as it slowly reveals the furtive purpose for their journey. The result is a humanist drama that offers an authentic, raw and deeply sincere observation of an Iranian family preparing to part with one of their own.
“Hit the Road,” is not rated and is displayed in Persian and English, with subtitles. The film is showing through June 2.
The uniquely emotional “Petite Maman” follows 8-year-old Nelly, who accompanies her parents to her mother’s childhood home to begin the difficult process of cleaning out its contents after the death of Nelly’s beloved grandmother. As Nelly explores the house and nearby woods, she is immediately drawn to a neighbor her own age building a treehouse. What follows is a tender tale of childhood grief, memory and connection. Céline Sciamma continues to prove herself as one of the most accomplished and unpredictable contemporary French filmmakers.
“Petite Maman” is rated PG and will be shown through May 26.