Sling Blade

     Catagory: Drama

     MPAA Rating: R

     Owned By: Keith

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Movie Details:   Sling Blade was a remarkably accomplished debut as writer and director for Billy Bob Thornton, who also delivered a striking performance as Karl Childers, a mildly retarded man who spent most of his life in a mental institution. When Karl was 12 years old, he discovered his mother making love with a man he'd never seen before; he snapped and killed them both. Released from the institution as a result of budget cuts, Karl says he has learned his lesson and adds, "I reckon I got no reason to kill no one." Karl ends up in a small town where he's befriended by Frank (Lucas Black), the son of a widowed mother who sees the eccentric but open-hearted Karl as a kindred spirit. Frank's mother, Linda (Natalie Canerday), also takes a liking to Karl and lets him stay with them after he gets a job at a fix-it shop. However, Karl also meets Doyle (Dwight Yoakam), Linda's boyfriend, a cruel, narrow-minded drunk who tosses casual abuse at Frank, treats Linda like dirt, and doesn't trust Karl. In addition to his own performance as Karl, Thornton draws remarkable work from his entire cast, especially country star Yoakam as the vicious coward Doyle and John Ritter as Linda's friend Vaughan, a mild-mannered homosexual who owns the neighborhood dollar store. Robert Duvall has a brief but memorable role as Karl's father, and musicians Col. Bruce Hampton and Vic Chesnutt appear as Doyle's party guests.