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By Chris Gore | December 10, 2001

This film has not yet been reviewed. Check back later for the complete review here on Synopsis: If Hollywood tends to make its characters all good or all bad, then director Victor Nunez does the opposite. He builds a story by pinpointing the precise moment in the life of a character when he or she is forced to make a life-altering choice. He has a deep understanding of characters who are strong on the outside but vulnerable on the inside. The namesakes of Ruby in Paradise and Ulee’s Gold have stamina and determination; they are ordinary people who must conjure up uncommon strength.

Sonny (Timothy Olyphant) had to be strong to endure prison. By the time he arrives home to a small coastal town, he has developed a deep-rooted look of determination. But for what is unclear. Something unresolved with his dad? A beef with the local underworld kingpin for whom he took a fall? Or is it to lay claim to his love for Ann (Sarah Wynter), now married to his best friend, the local sheriff (Josh Brolin)? Sonny’s return begins as a quiet rain that soon kicks up a storm that rocks the very foundation of the town.

There is energy to this film that is somewhat different from Nunez’s others. Along with a terrific cast, Nunez keeps the action driving forward: dangerous, sexy, and conflicted. His imagery still has his signature painterly quality, rich in hue and filled with the colors of the landscape. In Coastlines the air is thick, the soil rich and moist. It feels like Florida because it is Florida. Let’s not forget that Nunez is one of a rare breed of regional filmmakers. The payoff is a great film steeped in authenticity.

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