River Runs Through It, A [1992]

A lyrical and nostalgic film from director Robert Redford (Quiz Show, Ordinary People), based on the popular autobiographical novel by Norman MacLean, A River Runs Through It shows the best that modern filmmaking has to offer. The film chronicles two brothers coming of age in early-20th-century Missoula, Montana, under the stern tutelage of their minister father, played by Tom Skerritt (Top Gun). Their father instills in them a love of fly fishing, which for one brother (Brad Pitt) becomes a lifelong passion even as he sets out to become a newspaperman and struggles with his addiction to gambling. The other brother, Norman (Craig Sheffer), dreams of exploring the world outside of Missoula as he falls in love with a local girl (Emily Lloyd) who also dreams of broader horizons. Soon one brother must discover the true meaning of family loyalty when the other finds himself in deeper trouble than ever before. Redford, who also narrates the film, does a masterful job in re-creating the period and in drawing out affecting performances from his young cast. An Oscar winner for Philippe Rousselot's luminescent cinematography, this is a poignant and special film. --Robert Lane

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