- 1 hr 36 min
Carolina is a 2003 romantic comedy-drama film directed by Marleen Gorris, starring Julia Stiles, Shirley MacLaine, and Alessandro Nivola. The movie tells the story of Carolina (Julia Stiles), a young woman from a wealthy family, who lives in a small southern town in the United States. She is struggling to find her place in the world while dealing with her eccentric grandmother, a failed romance with a local boy, and her family's expectations of her. Carolina lives with her grandmother, Lily (Shirley MacLaine), who is a free-spirited woman with a zest for life. Lily has been a major influence on Carolina's life, and the two have a close relationship. However, Carolina is getting frustrated with her grandmother's wild ways, and wants her to act more her age. Carolina is also dealing with the fallout of a breakup with her boyfriend, an aspiring musician named Albert (Alessandro Nivola), who has moved on to a new girlfriend. Carolina meets a man named Dedham (Randy Quaid) who is interested in buying the family home, a mansion that has been passed down through generations. This leads Carolina to question her own attachment to the house, and her family's history. At the same time, she is also pursued by a man named Heath (Edward Atterton), a British businessman who is in town on business. As Carolina grapples with these issues, she also gets involved in a project to save the local theater from being demolished. This brings her into contact with a diverse group of characters, including a theater director named Theodore (Johnathon Schaech), and a group of local theater enthusiasts who are determined to save the theater. Throughout the movie, Carolina struggles to find her own path in life, and figure out who she wants to be. She is torn between her love for her family, her desire for independence, and her interest in the world around her. The movie explores themes of family, love, and the search for identity, in a heartwarming and humorous way. Carolina is a movie that relies heavily on its characters, and the fantastic cast delivers in every respect. Julia Stiles is charming and relatable as Carolina, while Shirley MacLaine is as delightful as ever as the eccentric grandmother. Alessandro Nivola brings a touch of humor and vulnerability to the role of the ex-boyfriend, while Randy Quaid is hilarious as the slimy real estate agent. The supporting cast is also fantastic, with standout performances from Johnathon Schaech and Elizabeth Ashley as the theater enthusiasts. The movie is set in a small southern town, and the production design and cinematography capture the feel of the place beautifully. The town is depicted as a colorful and lively place, full of interesting characters and quirky attractions. The soundtrack is also worth mentioning, featuring a mix of classic southern rock and contemporary indie music that fits the tone of the movie perfectly. Overall, Carolina is a charming and heartwarming romantic comedy-drama that is well worth a watch. The movie is driven by excellent performances and a strong script, which balances humor and drama in a way that feels authentic and relatable. If you're looking for a movie with heart, soul, and a good dose of southern charm, be sure to give Carolina a watch.