Curse of the Starving Class

Watch Curse of the Starving Class

  • R
  • 1995
  • 1 hr 42 min
  • 5.6  (2,514)

Curse of the Starving Class is a dark and gritty drama from 1994 directed by J. Michael McClary and based on the play of the same name by Sam Shepard. The film stars James Woods, Kathy Bates, and Randy Quaid as a dysfunctional family struggling to survive in rural California. The film centers around the Tate family, a group of emotionally damaged individuals living in a dilapidated farmhouse. The father, Weston (played by Woods), is a perpetually drunk and violent alcoholic who spends most of his time scheming for ways to make money. His wife, Ella (Bates), is a frustrated housewife who dreams of escaping their poverty and starting a new life. Their son, Wesley (Henry Thomas), is a sullen teenager who feels trapped in a household full of dysfunction. Finally, their daughter, Emma (Kristin Fiorella), is a rebellious teenager who is desperate to escape her family's toxic environment.

As the film progresses, the tension between the family members begins to escalate. Weston hatches a plan to sell their farm and move to Alaska, while Ella secretly plans to run away with a wealthy businessman. Wesley starts to rebel against his father's abusive behavior, while Emma falls deeper into drug addiction. Their collective struggles push them to their breaking points, and the family dynamic starts to unravel.

One of the standout performances in the film is Kathy Bates as Ella. She portrays a woman who is torn between her love for her family and her desire for a better life. Bates brings a vulnerability to the character that makes it easy for the audience to empathize with her situation. James Woods is equally impressive as Weston, a character who is both repulsive and captivating in his depravity. Woods brings a depth to Weston that makes it clear that he's not simply a one-dimensional villain.

Randy Quaid gives a strong performance as Taylor, the sleazy businessman who Ella plans to run away with. His manipulative nature and lack of empathy make him a character that the audience loves to hate. Henry Thomas also shines as Wesley, the character who serves as the moral compass of the film. Thomas expertly portrays a young man who is struggling to find his place in the world while dealing with the trauma of growing up in a dysfunctional family.

The film's gritty and realistic portrayal of poverty is another standout feature. The Tate family's home is falling apart, their clothes are tattered and worn, and they struggle to put food on the table. The film pulls no punches when it comes to depicting the harsh reality of living in poverty, and it makes for a visceral viewing experience.

Overall, Curse of the Starving Class is a powerful drama that explores the complexities of family relationships and the toll that poverty takes on individuals. It's a film that doesn't shy away from difficult subject matter, and it's all the more impactful for it. With strong performances from its talented cast and a compelling story, Curse of the Starving Class is definitely worth a watch for fans of gritty dramas.

Curse of the Starving Class is a 1995 drama with a runtime of 1 hour and 42 minutes. It has received moderate reviews from critics and viewers, who have given it an IMDb score of 5.6.

Where to Watch Curse of the Starving Class
Curse of the Starving Class is available to watch, stream, download and buy on demand at Apple TV, Amazon, Google Play, YouTube VOD and Vudu. Some platforms allow you to rent Curse of the Starving Class for a limited time or purchase the movie and download it to your device.
  • Release Date
  • MPAA Rating
  • Runtime
    1 hr 42 min
  • Language
  • IMDB Rating
    5.6  (2,514)