Watch Common Ground
- 1 hr 45 min
Common Ground is a drama film from 2000 directed by Donna Deitch. The film follows the lives of three siblings, Phoebe (Brittany Murphy), Eleanor (Erika Christensen), and Andrew (Jason Priestley), who are forced to come together to settle their father's affairs after he passes away. Phoebe is the youngest of the three siblings and has always felt a bit estranged from her family. She's a struggling artist who's been living in Paris, but when she learns about her father's death, she returns to her childhood home in Connecticut. While there, she reconnects with her sister Eleanor, who's always been the family's golden child. Eleanor is a high-achieving lawyer, living in New York City with her successful fiance, and trying to come to terms with her father's death. She's also carrying a secret that she's been keeping from her family for years.
Andrew, the eldest sibling, is a successful photographer living in Los Angeles. He's been estranged from his family for years and has not been in contact with them since he left home in his late teens. When he learns about his father's death, he makes the trip back home to confront the ghosts of his past and face his siblings.
As the three siblings come together to wrap up their father's estate, they're forced to confront the issues that have kept them apart for so many years. Each of them is struggling with their own past, their own secrets, and their own sense of loss. Through a series of flashbacks and present-day conversations, we learn about their upbringing, their family dynamics, and the reasons why they've grown apart over the years.
Despite their shared history, the three siblings have very different experiences of their childhood. We learn that Andrew was always the black sheep of the family, constantly butting heads with his father over his artistic dreams. Eleanor, on the other hand, was the apple of her father's eye, and quickly picked up on his love for the law. Phoebe, meanwhile, felt neglected by her parents and was often left to her own devices.
As they work to settle their father's affairs, the siblings are forced to grapple with their own demons. Andrew is struggling with his career and his strained relationship with his own son. Eleanor is dealing with her secret, and the realization that her perfect life may not be what she really wants. Phoebe is trying to come to terms with her own failures, and the fact that her dreams have not panned out the way she had hoped.
Along the way, the three siblings must learn to face their past and their present, in order to move forward into the future. They come to realize that despite their differences, they share a common ground - their family ties, their love for their father, and their shared history. Through tears and laughter, they begin to rebuild their relationships, and find a new sense of hope and purpose in their lives.
Overall, Common Ground is a moving and heartfelt drama that explores the complex nature of family relationships, and the way that our past can shape our present and future. With strong performances from the cast, and a poignant script from writer Paula Kostrzewski, the film is a must-see for anyone who has ever struggled with their own family ties.