The Peanut Butter Falcon
An outlaw fisherman befriends a runaway.
This contemporary riff on a Mark Twain adventure “could have easily been a recipe for excessive, grating twee,” said Ryan Oliver in ThePlaylist.net. A 22-year-old with Down syndrome who dreams of joining a wrestling school escapes the home he’s been consigned to and falls in with a scruffy crab trapper who’s also on the run. Zack Gottsagen, an actor with Down syndrome, co-stars alongside Shia LaBeouf, and as the pair travels by road and raft down the North Carolina coast, LaBeouf brandishes “that rogue charm that makes him both off-putting and alluring.” The number of name actors who signed on for this little project is “a small miracle,” said Peter Debruge in Variety. Our hero’s escape is assisted by a wily old Bruce Dern while Dakota Johnson assumes the role of the caregiver sent to track him down. Some of the narrative wheels “turn creakily” as the “dirt-flecked fairy tale” nears its end, said Randall Colburn in ConsequenceOfSound.net. Still, it’s a pleasure to see a road movie that “retains a giddy sense of possibility and innocence—the kind that almost feels out of fashion in today’s contentious age.” ■