Writer-director Alan Ball (“American Beauty”, “Six Feet Under”) offers up a powerful and emotional drama (with just enough splashes of comedy) about a closeted gay man (Paul Bettany) in the late 60s and his young niece (Sophia Lillis) who helps him come to grips with his sexuality. Outstanding performances all around in a complex, heartbreaking, and brilliant film. Easily among the best of the year.

4.5/5 stars