Flag Day

Director: Sean Penn
Year Released: 2021
Rating: 1.5

Jennifer Vogel (Dylan Penn as an adult), whose father John (Penn) ditched her, her mother (Katheryn Winnick) and brother (Hopper Penn), tracks him down and finds he's even more screwed up than she could have ever imagined: he's a career criminal who can't stop lying or trying to cheat the system.  The attempt to make it "poetic" - borrowing its aesthetic from none other than Terrence Malick - just tries to cover up that it's a rambling, shapeless movie about Daddy Issues, and how Jennifer's failing to "reform" her Old Man led her to making her own life a success: she sneaks into Goldy Gopher University (despite awful grades in high school), becomes interested in journalism, and works on a story about pollution ... and while doing the leg work on that scandalous bit of news, sees her Pop commit suicide on live television (because Sean just had to go to the extreme for the Big Conclusion).  Like I said about Made in Italy with Liam Neeson and his real life son Micheál Richardson, I can't help but wonder if Poppa Penn, in casting his own offspring, isn't using the big screen to work out personal problems: people do exist that are trained and licensed to help you with your issues, after all.