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Ruckus (1980)

Kyle is a traumatized ex-special forces soldier recently back from Vietnam. Jenny has been waiting for years if her missing husband might return from the war. When they meet they experience a common ground and try to come back to life in the here and now as their friendship develops. Meanwhie Kyle has caused the small town’s redneck population to go crazy on him and the title’s ruckus ensues. This is a really charming and deceptively simple, straightforward and honest comedic take on a lot of issues concerning appearances, communities, gender and other stereotypes, as well as a quietly contemplative film on healing and the relentless passage of time. Farnsworth and Johnson serve as elder-statesman-like counterparts to balance the reckless hillbillies whose (blood)thirst for adventure will get quenched by a taste of war-like madness and disorientation. Ruckus possesses a light and sometimes fleetingly subtle touch that is very unusual for this type of material, especially considering its broad comedy and the openly articulated themes, which makes it a true one-of-a-kind experience, a film that tries to poke fun at the absurdities of life during the specific time it was made, and a perfect example of low-key independent filmmaking which can blend diverse and contradictory ideas and emotions to create a grab bag of bewildering moments and cinematic miniatures that enrich each other and rekindle the lust for life of our two protagonists as well as the viewers’ belief in the magic of cinema. Cause in movies, everything is possible.