Joe (2013 film)

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Joe (2013 film) poster.jpg
Theatrical release poster
Directed by David Gordon Green
Produced by
Screenplay by Gary Hawkins
Based on Joe 
by Larry Brown
Music by
  • Jeff McIlwain
  • David Wingo
Cinematography Tim Orr
Edited by Colin Patton
Distributed by Worldview Entertainment
Release dates
  • August 30, 2013 (2013-08-30) (Venice)
  • April 11, 2014 (2014-04-11) (United States)
Running time 117 minutes[1]
Country United States
Language English
Budget $4 million
Box office $2,365,467[2][3]

Joe is a 2013 drama film directed by David Gordon Green and starring Nicolas Cage, Tye Sheridan and Ronnie Gene Blevins. It is an adaptation of Larry Brown's 1991 novel of the same name and premiered at the 2013 Venice Film Festival,[4][5] with a subsequent screening at the 2013 Toronto International Film Festival.[6]


An ex-con, who is the unlikeliest of role models, meets a 15-year-old boy and is faced with the choice of redemption or ruin.



Joe received generally positive reviews from critics. Film review aggregator Rotten Tomatoes reports that 86% of critics gave the film a positive review based on 123 reviews with a "Certified Fresh" rating and an average score of 7.3/10, with the site consensus: "Rich in atmosphere and anchored by a powerful performance from Nicolas Cage, Joe is a satisfying return to form for its star -- as well as director David Gordon Green".[8] On Metacritic, it holds a 74/100 score (indicating "generally favorable"), based on reviews from 36 critics.[9] Steve Pulaski of Influx Magazine gave the film an A- rating, saying, "As expected with a Green film and his dedicated cinematographer Tim Orr, the look of Joe is rich in atmosphere and often grotesque, showing the murky side of backwoods areas. Films like this, however, give me a real appreciation for societal imperfections and seeing the real-life ugliness of these areas that are covered in green, brown, and black forestry, covered in mud, and simply broken and dilapidated in structure."

The film circulated into the mainstream news when the film's actor Gary Poulter was found dead in a shallow body of water in September 2013 before the film was ever released.[10] [11]Poulter, who played an alcoholic father in the film, was a real-life homeless man, who suffered from alcoholism and was already deeply ill. His only other acting credit was as a background extra in the TV series Thirtysomething. Producers worried casting Poulter in the film would be a risk, with Poulter's lack of sobriety, however, Green stayed committed to allowing him to be in the film. Writing for, Peter Sobczynski called Poulter's performance "stunning" and "one of the great one-shot performances in the history of the cinema".[12]


  1. ^ "JOE (15)". Artificial Eye. British Board of Film Classification. May 16, 2014. Retrieved May 16, 2014. 
  2. ^
  3. ^
  4. ^ "Venezia 70". labiennale. Retrieved 25 July 2013. 
  5. ^ "Venice film festival 2013: the full line-up". The Guardian (London). 25 July 2013. Retrieved 25 July 2013. 
  6. ^ "Toronto film festival 2013: the full line-up". The Guardian (London). 23 July 2013. Retrieved 2013-07-24. 
  7. ^ McClintock, Pamela (7 September 2012). "Toronto 2012: Nicolas Cage To Star In David Gordon Green’s ‘Joe’". Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved 19 March 2013. 
  8. ^ "Joe (2013)". Rotten Tomatoes. Flixster. Retrieved December 14, 2014. 
  9. ^ "Joe". Metacritic. Retrieved December 14, 2014. 
  10. ^ The Tragedy of Gary Poulter, Nic Cage's Homeless Co-Star. Retrieved on 2014-05-22.
  11. ^ His Name Was Gary Poulter. Retrieved on 2014-12-08.
  12. ^ Joe Movie Review & Film Summary (2014). Roger Ebert. Retrieved on 2014-05-22.

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