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Christina Ricci as a promiscuous twen junkie who lost her path after feeling abandoned, Samuel L. Jackson as a solid rock of a blues singer with strong Christian beliefs, feeling abandoned himself. Paths cross, Jackson sees a God-sent mission to help the girl, and in consequence makes her wear underwear and a heavy iron chain half of the film. I am not sure whether this turns out to be actually a “good” film, but it definitely is a film that asks a lot of its actors (actress, in particular) and does not shy away from exposing human ability to be cruel and endure cruelty. At times, you really need to suspend disbelief in order to accept how people how just a minute ago treated each other in unspeakable ways suddenly reconcile and team up to suffer the slings and arrows of outrageous fortune together. As the acting is impeccable, this works through the sheer presence of these tortured characters. It is a bit too frequent, however, that I had to hold my breath and decide whether I should take it as a piece of cruel realism or as an allegory. In the end, the film is powerful despite its flaws.

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