Shannon (Shannon Harper) seems to lead a pretty uneventful life. A bouncer during the evenings and an insurance claims adjuster during the day, Shannon is just trying to do good by his life, particularly after having survived so many rough years involved with drugs. The only problem is, Shannon hasn’t been feeling too good lately, and a visit to his doctor reveals that Shannon has an aggressive form of stomach cancer, putting into serious doubt how much longer Shannon will be alive.
Keith Miller’s Welcome to Pine Hill is a wonderful character study, and it is Shannon Harper’s film to lose. However, he does anything but let the audience down as his character processes the sudden question of his own mortality, all while trying to find his place in the life he currently lives, used to live and the idyllic life he wishes he’d had.
This isn’t the type of film where lots of things happen; this is simply a portrait of a man whose time has run out. It’s not melodramatic, full of forced conflicts and anguish. So much just occurs below the surface within the various social contexts of Shannon’s life, and yet it remains captivating throughout. Again, kudos be to Shannon Harper. In less capable hands, this film would not be anywhere near as good as it is.