So that's why this movie sat on the shelf for four years.
I don't want to hate on Fireflies in the Garden, because Ryan Reynolds and Willem DaFoe actually turn in some decent performances, but this film is filled with so many plot holes I'm actually wondering if the version I watched was the initial cut of the film. (The American cut of the film is a whopping 20 mins shorter than the one released in Germany, for example)
Michael Taylor (Ryan Reynolds) has horrible memories of his abusive father (DaFoe) and his caring mother (Julia Roberts) that always tried to help. Fast forward into the future and his parents get into a car accident leaving Lisa (Roberts) dead. She was supposed to graduate from college on that day, after giving it up to raise her family. Michael's relationship is still strained with his father. He also is having issues with his ex wife (Carrie-Anne Moss) and his aunt Jane. (Emily Watson as an adult, Hayden Panietierre as a teen) Michael is an author and is about to publish a book that according to Jane will ruin his father. The family attempts to deal with this tragedy, some feeling guilt, others taking a look at themselves, and of course discovering a few family secrets along the way.
The movie left WAY to many questions un-answered. Directors like Christopher Nolan and Quentin Tarantino have perfected this method and made it acceptable in their films. Not this one, no, there were too many key issues left open. Let me count thy ways..
1) Why was Jane staying with Michael's family for the summer?
2) Why is Jane and Michael's close relationship now on edge? Why do her kids hate him so much?
3) Why does Michael suddenly change his opinion of his father towards the end of the film.
4) What is the big secret in the book that will ruin Michael's father?
5) Why was the father acting like a complete douche in the first place?
You can guess the answers to those questions, but they still do not help this film. This is a shame because it was actually very interesting, but those glaring omissions really hurt it in the end.
Memorable Quote: "Oh you mean those books in store? Available for purchase?" - Michael (Ryan Reynolds)