Siblings Steven (Joseph Rene) and Samantha (Marci Journey) live on the family farm, taking care of their sick mother (Mary Anzalone). While they both do their best to make ends meet, years of debt and financial neglect by their father has left the family land on the brink of bank foreclosure. With few options, both siblings make questionable moves to secure the money necessary to keep their home.
For Steven, that means getting involved with some shady side work with his friend and ex-con Cooper (Stevie Hendrix). For Samantha, it means taking advantage of an “opportunity” that she didn’t initially see to her advantage. Altogether, one tragic mistake after another.
For as much as Davis Farm connects narrative elements by its final minutes, giving the illusion of complexity, it’s actually a pretty simple story, and is portrayed as such. In its straightforward and basic way, the film feels like something that wouldn’t be out-of-place as a made-for-cable drama. It doesn’t really push any buttons, for good or bad.
The result is as middle-of-the-road a feeling for a film as I’ve had in a while. While I can’t think of too much to criticize the film for —the audio mix has some questionable moments; some performances are stilted and unnatural but they’re balanced by others that are more capable— I likewise can’t think of much to praise here either. It’s predictable, but it looks good and moves at a solid pace; altogether, though, it is just okay.
Which is an unfortunate way to feel about the film, because who wants to just feel “meh” about something they’ve watched? It’s not like it’s a bad film at all, it just doesn’t do much to establish itself beyond its simple, though competent, execution. It’s not an awful experience, just a forgettable one.
Still, even in its unexceptional nature, it does more right than many a lesser film does. Points are due to Davis Farm for even landing near that middle line, because that’s not always as easy as it sounds.
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