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Writer/director Tim Kirkman's gentle drama set in North Carolina tracks between three stories, each set a couple years apart, that eventually coalesce into one integrated narrative. In the earliest thread, a somewhat lost young gay man, Mark (Kip Pardue), befriends a motel owner (Michael Kelly) at a beach while trying to save loggerhead turtles; set approximately a year later, the second track finds a middle-aged, small-town minister's wife (Tess Harper) questioning "family values"; and in the third, more contemporary story, a troubled woman (Bonnie Hunt) decides to search for the son she long ago gave up for adoption. Kirkman intercuts between the three, though any early confusion is quickly dispelled as the pieces fall into their obvious places. That there is no great twist or surprise feels wholly natural in this quiet, well-acted film that ultimately offers bittersweet knowledge about families of all configurations. Starts Fri., Jan. 6. Oaks (AH)

 

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