The Prize Winner of Defiance, Ohio

Movie Information

In Brief: One of the more perplexing mysteries of modern studio practices is just why Dreamworks Pictures abandoned The Prize Winner of Defiance, Ohio, a 2005 release that played on a mere handful of screens to mixed (though often glowing) reviews. It boasted a box-office draw in both star Julianne Moore and its popular literary source that chronicled the true story of Evelyn Ryan, who kept her large family together and going in the 1950s by winning slogan and jingle contests. And yet it was unceremoniously pulled from distribution. Far worse films with far lesser credentials have been given much fairer shots. It’s not a perfect film. But the film has several things to recommend it, starting with Moore’s performance as the beleaguered housewife who has found a way to be at least a pale shadow of what she might have been in an era that didn’t consign her to the kitchen. Certainly it’s worthy of better treatment than it received. This excerpt was taken from a review by Ken Hanke originally published on June 21, 2006. This review was published prematurely on June 13. The actual date of the screening is June 25. 
Genre: Biopic Drama
Director: Jane Anderson
Starring: Julianne Moore, Woody Harrelson, Laura Dern, Trevor Morgan, Ellary Potterfield
Rated: PG-13

The Hendersonville Film Society will show The Prize Winner of Defiance, Ohio on Sunday, June 25, at 2 p.m. in the Smoky Mountain Theater at Lake Pointe Landing Retirement Community, 333 Thompson St., Hendersonville.

About Ken Hanke
Head film critic for Mountain Xpress from December 2000 until his death in June 2016. Author of books "Ken Russell's Films," "Charlie Chan at the Movies," "A Critical Guide to Horror Film Series," "Tim Burton: An Unauthorized Biography of the Filmmaker."

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One thought on “The Prize Winner of Defiance, Ohio

  1. Chip Kaufmann

    It should be noted that PRIZEWINNER will not be shown this weekend but next weekend (the 25th) as it says at the bottom of the review. This weekend HFS will screen the original 1952 MY COUSIN RACHEL with Olivia de Havilland and Richard Burton. Come and compare it with the new release.

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