Officer Jim Arnaud’s eulogy at his mother’s funeral does not go as planned. Struggling to stay focused as his emotions take over, the tongue-tied 30-something launches into a free-wheeling diatribe of confessional digressions, not helped by the fact that he cannot seem to get his mother’s favourite Bruce Springsteen song to play on his daughter’s pink stereo. Consumed by sadness, Jim searches for some semblance of control in an otherwise crumbling existence.
Propelled by an extraordinarily unhinged central performance from writer-director-star Jim Cummings (expanding from his award-winning 2016 short film of the same name), Thunder Road is a painful, often blackly funny exploration of grief, mental illness and the fragile male ego. It is certainly an uncomfortable watch, but also a rewarding one, brimming with disarming pathos and raw, unfiltered emotion.
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