Benny & Joon

Benny & Joon

DVD - 2001
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A mentally ill young woman who lives with her older brother finds her love in an eccentric young man who models himself after Buster Keaton.

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BridgettM
Nov 09, 2016

Benny & Joon is a sweet and quirky dramedy. I miss seeing Aidan Quinn and Mary Stuart Masterson in things and seeing Johnny Depp in good movies--he's had a pretty bad run. In addition to great writing and nice performances by those three actors, the movie is notable for its early roles for Julianne Moore and William H. Macy. Benny & Joon is rated PG for theme, a scene of mild sensuality and one use of harsh language.

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DaisyCosh
May 25, 2015

"Benny and Joon" is about three people: Benny (played by Aidan Quinn), Joon (played by Mary Stuart Masterson), and Sam (played by Johnny Depp). It opens with Joon expressing another one of her artistic urges while Sam rides a train reading a book on Buster Keaton, a silent film star and one of his idols. Meanwhile, Benny is trying to make a living in his auto shop. This introduction displays each of their personalities: Joon as a creative type, Sam as a curious soul, and Benny as someone who feels a strong sense of duty and responsibility. Benny is Joon's older brother, caring for his mentally ill little sister with no help whatsoever. During a poker night gone awry, Joon loses the game, but gains Sam. Joon, who likes very few people, enjoys the company of Sam, so overworked Benny seizes any opportunity to have Sam stick around as an unpaid baby-sitter. However, once Benny realizes that Sam and Joon are becoming more than just friends, Benny does what he can to put a kibosh on the romance. Unfortunately, Benny stands to lose Joon forever without Sam's help. There are a few other characters, like Ruthie (played by Julianne Moore), but these parts are so unsubstantial that they may as well not exist. I felt it was a shame since I like Julianne Moore as an actress, but the character didn't propel the story forward in any meaningful way. At least the three major roles are performed expertly. "Benny and Joon" deals with mental health in a way that stands out for a film from the nineties. The stereotype of severe mental retardation remained prominent until films like "Rain Man" opened up a world of skilled idiot savants. Suddenly, the picture had changed of how the mentally challenged live; "Benny and Joon" adds an even wider viewpoint, not just of the patient but of the patient's family. There are gifts and burdens to living with someone who has unique problems, like Joon does, which is the central message in the film. I love how it is handled, making it a beautiful and joyous celebration of a person, not a serious look at disability and disease.

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BoogerBot
May 11, 2015

Maybe I'm biased bc I like Depp & Quinn. I like the quirkiness of the Depp & Masterson. Quinn is a bit overbearing but I guess it's because he's the character that needs to be changed.

imatelly Jul 31, 2014

great chick flick.

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poodlegirl
Jul 02, 2014

Loved this movie and it's true Johnny Depp! It's got a great cast (of 20 years ago) and both hubby and I thought it was very entertaining!

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johncruse
Jun 29, 2014

NOT CLOSED CAPTIONED IN ENGLISH.

Alynn J Mahle Apr 03, 2012

This movie has been a favorite of mine for years--you should see it. Suitable for most age groups. Johnny Depp shines in this one.

TATL May 24, 2011

I remember this as a great movie and can't wait to show it to my kids

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bdls206
Apr 07, 2011

This is a quirky romantic comedy that contains some of Depp's best comedic acting. This is a touching, and well acted film. I would recommend this movie for a date night.

Quotes

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laustcawz Apr 24, 2013

Joon: "Having a Boo Radley moment, are we?"

laustcawz Mar 21, 2012

Joon: "Some cultures are defined by their relationship to cheese."

laustcawz Mar 01, 2012

Joon: "You're out of your tree."

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bdls206
Apr 07, 2011

Joon: She was given to fits of semi-precious metaphors.
Benny: The woman is a housekeeper, Joon, not an English professor.

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bdls206
Apr 07, 2011

Joon: Should we let him in?
Benny: Yeah, before someone slaps a stamp on him and sends him to Guam.

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bdls206
Apr 07, 2011

Sam: Thanks for the couch. Um... Mike made me sleep under the sink.

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bdls206
Apr 07, 2011

Joon: Some cultures are defined by their relationship to cheese.

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bdls206
Apr 07, 2011

bdls206 thinks this title is suitable for 10 years and over

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b
bdls206
Apr 07, 2011

In a small town, an auto mechanic named Benny is devoted to taking care of his mentally ill sister, Joon, who can barely function alone in the real world despite being a talented artist. This relatively stable situation is shaken up when Benny is obliged in a poker game to welcome another player's relative, Sam, to his home for a few days. When Sam arrives, he quickly makes an impression with his quietly eccentric ways which emulate the antics of the great silent movie comedian, Buster Keaton. Without Benny's full knowledge, Sam and Joon find themselves drawn to each other to the fullest degree. However when Benny finds out, it creates a rift in the siblings as they struggle to accept their relationship is profoundly changing with the presence of this odd newcomer.

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