Cowboy Booking International | Release Date: October 27, 2000
7.5
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Generally favorable reviews based on 23 Ratings
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6
MattO.Aug 29, 2007
Well done,but definitely overrated. I find DGG's movie have great characters in plots that are threadbare.
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8
SpangleSep 17, 2016
A slow, sweet, and often times tragic film from director David Gordon Green, George Washington is a compelling slice of life film about a group of friends covering up a tragic mistake and their summer as a whole. Quite different from Green'sA slow, sweet, and often times tragic film from director David Gordon Green, George Washington is a compelling slice of life film about a group of friends covering up a tragic mistake and their summer as a whole. Quite different from Green's later works, such as Pineapple Express, this down-to-Earth film is a pretty simply plotted film with absolutely stellar characters, writing, and acting.

Firstly, however, I have heard a lot of praise for the cinematography. This praise is certainly very fair. As with the rest of the film, it shows signs of its low-budget indie status, but cinematographer Tim Orr does a terrific job in this film. Though it looks low-budget and rough, it never looks amauterish. Instead, Orr moves the camera with confidence and with the skills of a true professional.

As for the writing, this is where the film really shines. With believable characters who also happen to be incredibly relatable, Green does a great job developing his characters and giving them appropriate responses to the challenges that arise throughout the film. No matter what happens, they all react in ways that are certainly within their character. While the film is named George Washington, I would not say that George Richardson is the only kid with any development. Instead, the whole cast of characters is given background without any exposition. Instead, it just shows you and trusts its audience to understand that this is who the character is and where they come from. Coming from the day and age in which exposition is king, George Washington is a true breath of fresh air in that regard.

That said, the voice-over can be a bit much and is the main detraction from an otherwise very good film. Often a little wordy, the voice-over is delivered by a 12-year old girl and sounds far deeper than any 12-year old I have ever met. Thus, an incredibly believable film outdoes itself a little bit with this element as it feels as if it is very much in contrast with all of the other positives of the film. Without the voice-over and attempted depth, George Washington could have been truly great.

Overall, though it shows signs of its low-budget, David Gordon Green's slice of life film George Washington is an often moving look at youth, growing up, death, and this summer that will live on it the memories of its character for the rest of time. Incredibly written with terrific characters and shockingly talented child actors, George Washington is a very good film.
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