Jolene (2008) Poster

Jolene (2008)

  • Rate: 6.5/10 total 1,002 votes 
  • Genre: Drama
  • Runtime: 121 min
  • Filming Location: Arizona, USA
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Jolene (2008)


Jolene 2008tt0867334.jpg poster

  • IMDb page: Jolene (2008)
  • Rate: 6.5/10 total 1,002 votes 
  • Genre: Drama
  • Runtime: 121 min
  • Filming Location: Arizona, USA
  • Director: Dan Ireland
  • Stars: Jessica Chastain, Frances Fisher and Rupert Friend
  • Original Music By: Harry Gregson-Williams   
  • Plot Keyword: Orphan | California | Shot In The Chest | Tulsa Oklahoma | South Carolina

Writing Credits By:

  • Dennis Yares (screenplay)
  • E.L. Doctorow (story "Jolene: A Life")
  • Michael Gilio (additional writing)

Known Trivia

    Goofs: Continuity: When Jolene is working as a server at the outdoor banquet, she carries a tray with two Champagne glasses. One glass is full and one empty. The very next cut, she places the tray on a table, and both glasses are empty.

    Plot: A teenage orphan spends ten years traveling cross-country experiencing life, love and heartbreak. Based on E.L. Doctorow's story, "Jolene: A Life."  »

    Story: A teenage orphan spends ten years traveling cross-country experiencing life, love and heartbreak. Based on E.L. Doctorow's story, "Jolene: A Life."


    Synopsis: ‘Jolene’ is the story about ten years in a young girl’s life, who, having grown up in a succession of uncaring and abusive foster homes, marries a young man at 15 in the hope of escaping, and finding a home where she might find some love and happiness. Unfortunately, a bad decision on her part results in catastrophe and ultimately lands her in an institution for young women. After a year of hell, climaxing with an affair with a prison guard, she manages to escape and is finally on the road to freedom and finding herself. In her quest, she passes through a series of relationships, adventures and misfortunes which take her across America, in search of the life she dreams of. Based on the controversial short story by E.L. Doctorow.


    FullCast & Crew

    Produced By:

    • Luis Colina known as associate producer
    • Carol Ellison Fleming known as associate producer
    • Zachary Matz known as producer
    • Alex Poulos known as associate producer
    • Riva Yares known as producer

    FullCast & Crew:

    • Jessica Chastain known as Jolene
    • Frances Fisher known as Cindy
    • Rupert Friend known as Coco Leger
    • Dermot Mulroney known as Uncle Phil
    • Zeb Newman known as Mickey
    • Chazz Palminteri known as Sal Fontaine
    • Denise Richards known as Marin
    • Theresa Russell known as Aunt Kay
    • Michael Vartan known as Brad
    • Shannon Whirry known as Teacher
    • Drea Pruseau known as Nurse
    • Mickey Cottrell known as Dr. Bloomberg
    • Mary Jane Johnson known as Mrs. Ames
    • Bri Acsani known as Suicide Girl
    • Julie Sledge known as Girl in Hospital
    • Klor Rowland known as Carrot Truck Driver (as Klor Rowland Jr.)
    • David Roberts known as Customer at Desert Queen
    • Wesley Allen known as Customer at Desert Queen
    • Stephanie Likes known as Kendra
    • Ron Welch known as Roller Skater Waiter
    • Jose Rosete known as Sid
    • Jonathan Simpson known as Biker Judge
    • Sherry Leigh known as Tatoo Lady
    • Samuel Hartstein known as Coco Jr.
    • Zachary Hartstein known as Coco Jr.
    • Dennis Yares known as Gentleman's Club Manager
    • Benjamin Mouton known as Jimmy
    • Eddie Guerra known as Frank
    • Ron Jordan known as Assassin (as Ronald Jordan)
    • Matthew Joyce known as Assassin
    • Amy Landers known as Peggy
    • Debbie Bartelt known as Brad's Mother
    • Cody Copp known as Delivery Boy (as Cody Kopp)
    • Matt Hish known as Benjamin the Waiter (as Matthew Hish)
    • Turner G. Davis known as Minister (as Turner Davis)
    • Josef Rainer known as Brad's Father
    • Grant Simonson known as Brad Jr. Infant
    • Avi Angel known as Brad Jr. 7 months
    • Jacqueline Torres known as Rosie
    • Sally Jo Bannow known as Lawyer
    • Maria Amorocho known as Shelter Director
    • Nadine Jackson-Akers known as Female Police Officer
    • Shane Dean known as Police Officer #1
    • Jason Sallee known as Police Officer #2
    • John Dobradenka known as Legal Aid Lawyer
    • Jennifer Pfalzgraff known as Maya
    • Coco Angel known as Mother in Hollywood
    • Alonzo Maellet known as Child in Hollywood
    • Asher Angel known as Brad Jr. 5 years old
    • Stephanie Alger known as Bus Station Girl (uncredited)
    • Kaily Alissano known as Coworker (uncredited)
    • Ronald Axell known as Party scenes / participant (uncredited)
    • Hayden Blades known as Comic Artist (uncredited)
    • Deuandra T. Brown known as Club Dancer (uncredited)
    • Mireya S. Brown known as Club Dancer (uncredited)
    • Anna Burchill known as Party Guest (uncredited)
    • Anthony Casanova known as Guest at Family BBQ (uncredited)
    • Cheridy Clement known as Waitress Rose (uncredited)
    • Joshua A. Cohen known as Fine Diner (uncredited)
    • Douglas L. Cook known as Mental Hospital Orderly (uncredited)
    • Jared Cyr known as John Bone – Aunt Kay's best friend from work (uncredited)
    • Emilee Edwards known as Woman in Shelter (uncredited)
    • Tara Fischer known as Carhop (uncredited)
    • Chris Flint known as Club Goer (uncredited)
    • Tracy Garretson known as Country Club Member (uncredited)
    • Pat Giglio known as Party Scene Guest (uncredited)
    • Sallie Glaner known as Business Woman (uncredited)
    • Barbara Glover known as Sales Clerk (uncredited)
    • Jessica Godber known as Dancer (uncredited)
    • Bob Huff known as Party participator (uncredited)
    • Elaine Huff known as Party Participator (uncredited)
    • Cristen Irene known as Waitress at Party Scene (uncredited)
    • Marcus Jordan known as Businessman (uncredited)
    • Greg Joseph known as Country Club Pianist (uncredited)
    • Mike Lawler known as Justice of the Peace (uncredited)
    • Sidney Malone known as Brad's Mother's Friend (uncredited)
    • David Matteson known as Young Man on Date (uncredited)
    • Rick Mattoon known as Country Club Member (uncredited)
    • Danny Max known as Boy (uncredited)
    • Ciro Mennella known as Attorney (uncredited)
    • Price Mitchum known as Ex-Boyfriend (uncredited)
    • Dennis Moore known as Guest at Family BBQ (uncredited)
    • Scott Munson known as Drive-In Patron (uncredited)
    • Travis Scott Newman known as Travis, the Maitre D' (uncredited)
    • Daren Palacio known as Wedding Guest (uncredited)
    • Louie Palmieri known as Bus Station Dad (uncredited)
    • Ron Provencal known as Club Patron (uncredited)
    • Cathy Rankin known as Susie (uncredited)
    • Gloria Jean Robertson known as Showgirl in Cafe (uncredited)
    • Sylvia Romero known as Party Guest / Participant (uncredited)
    • Andrew M. Rose known as Dancer (uncredited)
    • Jacquelyn Rueda known as Party Scenes (uncredited)
    • John Schile known as Wedding Guest (uncredited)
    • Jedediah Shoemaker known as Brad's Best Man (uncredited)
    • Torin Sixx known as Wedding Photographer (uncredited)
    • Mary Ann Snyder known as Nanny (uncredited)
    • Nathan Spector known as Background (uncredited)
    • Deena Trudy known as Office Assistant (uncredited)
    • Alyssa Waldrip known as Young Girl in Church (uncredited)
    • Dave Yekell known as Club Goer (uncredited)



    Supporting Department

    Makeup Department:
    • Laura Berman known as key hair stylist: Los Angeles
    • Siobhan Carmody known as makeup department head
    • Carissa Ferreri known as assistant makeup artist: Las Vegas
    • Adrienne Lynn known as assistant hair stylist
    • Adrienne Lynn known as assistant makeup artist
    • Dori Randall known as assistant hair stylist
    • Krystle Randall known as assistant makeup artist: Las Vegad
    • Jennifer Schweitzar known as assistant makeup artist: Las Vegas
    • Vicki Vacca known as key makeup artist

    Art Department:

    • Kenn Coplan known as construction coordinator
    • Turner G. Davis known as artist: Jolene's artr
    • Katie L. Greisiger known as art department assistant (as Katie Greisiger)
    • Matt Hausmann known as lead man
    • Eleni C. Krimitsos known as buyer (as Eleni Krimitsos)
    • Tobey L. Levine known as key art department assistant (as Tobey Levine)
    • Cristine Maia known as assistant buyer
    • Jeffrey M. O'Brien known as property master
    • Paul V. Picerni Jr. known as assistant property master (as Paul Picerni)
    • Robert Ruggeri known as swing gang
    • Peter Schleifer known as swing gang
    • Jefry Shebroe known as on-set dresser
    • Jason Baldwin Stewart known as key swing (as Jason Baldwin)
    • Greg Manke known as on-set dresser (uncredited)




    Production Companies:

    • Next Turn Productions

    Other Companies:

    • A to Z Equipment Rentals  production supplies
    • Ace Rentals  generators
    • Airwaves Cellular  cell phones
    • Alfonso's Breakaway Glass  props
    • Aliano Power Line  truck and trailer rentals
    • Arizona Truck Locators  truck and trailer rentals
    • Aspen Travel  travel agent
    • Big Bites Craft Service  craft service: Los Angeles
    • Broadcast Rentals  video monitors
    • C.R.a.P.S.  production supplies (as C.R.A.P.S.)
    • California Truck Rental  truck and trailer rentals
    • Camera Cars Unlimited  truck and trailer rentals
    • Catering Excellence  catering: Arizona
    • Catering by Andrea  catering: Las Vegas
    • Chapman/Leonard Studio Equipment  cranes
    • Chapman/Leonard Studio Equipment  dolly
    • Creative Cars Unlimited  process trailer/camera car: Arizona/Las Vegas
    • Creative Communications  walkie-talkies
    • Distribution by Air  shipping
    • Eastman Kodak  film stock
    • Extended Camera Support  camera rentals
    • Fresh Farm Films  trailers
    • Fuji Film  film stock
    • George Paddock  camera rentals
    • Goldman & Associates  extras casting: Las Vegas (as Goldman and Associates)
    • Hand Held Films  camera rentals
    • History For Hire  props
    • Holiday Studio Rentals  truck and trailer rentals
    • Hollywood Prop Finders  props
    • Hot Gear Remote Systems  camera rentals
    • Independent Studio Services  props
    • IndieClear  script clearance (as Indie Clear)
    • JP Morgan Chase Bank  financial institution (as JP Moirgan)
    • JP Studio Rental  truck and trailer rentals
    • Mario's Studio Services  catering: Los Angeles
    • Media Services  payroll service
    • Mel Underwood Water Truck Inc.  water truck (as Mel Underwood Water Trucks)
    • Melissa;s Munchies  craft service
    • Myman Abel Fineman Fox Greenspan Light  legal representation (as Myman, Abell, Fineman, Fox, Greenspan & Light)
    • New Post Group, The  off-line editorial facilities
    • New Post Group, The  telecine dailies
    • Otto Nemenz International  camera rentals (as Otto Nemenz)
    • Paskal Lighting  electric and grip equipment
    • Paul Yaffe Originals  props
    • Production Paramedics  set medics: Arizona
    • Quixote Studios  truck and trailer rentals
    • Reels on Wheels  film courier
    • Rocket Rentals  electric and grip equipment
    • Runway  post-production
    • Show-N-Tell Video Productions  video assist equipment
    • Skylight Inc.  balloon lights
    • Slow Motion Inc.  camera rentals
    • Sonic Magic  sound post-production and mixing (as Sonic Magic Studios)
    • Star Waggons  truck and trailer rentals
    • Studio Services  truck and trailer rentals
    • Sublime Sound  sound editorial services
    • Truman Van Dyke Company  insurance (as Truman Van Dyke)
    • Warner Bros. Studio Facilities  wardrobe rentals
    • Wavecrest Studios  score mixing facility
    • Wells Fargo Bank  financial institution (as Wells Fargo)
    • Western Costume Company  wardrobe rentals (as Western Costume)


    • Entertainment One (2011) (USA) (DVD)
    • E1 Entertainment
    • Falcon Films (2009) (Lebanon) (all media) (Middle East)
    • Screen Media Films (2009) (USA) (all media)



    Other Stuff

    Special Effects:

    • Creative Make-Up Effects (tattoos)
    • Killer FX (special effects)
    • Momentum VFX (digital opticals and visual effects)
    • iO Film (film scanning and recording)

    Visual Effects by:

    • Joe Alaniz known as scanning and recording producer: iO Film
    • Brian Beard known as restoration conformist: iO Film
    • Adam Hawkey known as restoration colorist: iO Film
    • Christopher Jones known as visual effects graphic artist: Titles, iO Filn
    • Michael John Koetter known as restoration data manager: iO Film (as Mike Koetter)
    • Mia Lavezzi known as restoration artist: iO Film
    • Kenneth Nakada known as visual effects supervisor: Momentum VFX
    • Erik Paesel known as visual effects data manager: Momentum VFX
    • Martha Soehendra known as visual effects compositor: Momentum VFX (as Martha E. Soehendra)
    • Elaine Essex Thompson known as visual effects producer: Momentum VFX
    • Sean Wilson known as visual effects compositor: Momentum VFX
    • Christopher Dusendschon known as digital imaging supervisor: iO FILM (uncredited)

    Release Date:

    • USA 13 June 2008 (Seattle International Film Festival)
    • USA 10 January 2009 (Palm Springs International Film Festival)
    • USA 21 March 2009 (Tiburon International Film Festival)
    • USA 3 April 2009 (Phoenix Film Festival)
    • USA 29 October 2010 (limited)

    MPAA: Rated R for strong sexual content, nudity, language, some violence and drug use



    Filmography links and data courtesy of The Internet Movie Database

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    Posted on March 30, 2012 by Harry in Movies | Tags: , .


    1. totalwonder from United States
      30 Mar 2012, 2:34 pm

      Of all the films I saw at the 2008 Seattle International Film Fest,"Jolene" is the one that stayed with me. Jessica Chastain gives a multilayered, complex, superlative performance as the title character. Agirl drifting through her life looking for love in all the wrongplaces. The film stays away from sentimental payoffs giving it a verydistinctive tone. Are we suppose to sympathize with Jolene? DanIreland, the director, leaves that to us in another honest andwonderful tale of longing and hope. From Rene Zellwegger in "The WholeWide World" to Joan Plowright in "Mrs Palfrey At The Claremont" DanIreland has shown a remarkable flair to bring out the best on hisfemale characters and more. Frances Fisher gives an Academy Awardworthy performance in a part so far away from anything I've ever seenher do that it took me a while to realize it was her. Michael Vartan,Dermot Mulroney, Chazz Palmintieri and in particular Rupert Friend givevivid, powerful performances. "Jolene" is unique in a year of sequelsand TV adaptations. I can't wait to see it again. Congratulations Mr.Ireland and thank you for your passionated and coherent commitment tothe independent soul.

    2. Tony Heck from United States
      30 Mar 2012, 2:34 pm

      When do you know for sure you are in love? After a failed marriage at ayoung age, Jolene (Chastain) deals with getting over the past andfinding herself. She sets off on a journey across the country lookingfor what is missing in her life. This is a very, very goodcoming-of-age story, also kind of inspiring in a way, no matter whathappens to her she never gets down and keeps pushing forward. On theother hand it is also pretty depressing to watch what this girl goesthrough. This movie does a great job of showing what a girl, who wasraised as an orphan and spent her youth between the home and fosterparents, acts like. Though it's not her first movie the woman who playsJolene (Jessica Chastain) is fantastic in this. It's not an easy role,especially with as much sex and nudity involved (nothing gratuitous, itactually helps define the character), along with the ranges of emotionshe must portray. I'm really surprised she didn't get any recognitionfor this. I don't want to give too much away, but I really, reallyenjoyed this movie. I give it an A.

      Would I watch it again? – I did already.

    3. abelardo64 from United States
      30 Mar 2012, 2:34 pm

      Jessica Chastain gives one of those performances that make history inthis wonderful Dan Ireland film based on a short story by Doctorow. Shegoes through a life of radical changes, so much so that it could beconsidered a multi character study if not for the amazing truth inChastain's portrayal. The exteriors may change and circumstances mayappear diametrically opposite but at its very center she's the samegirl we met at the beginning, never ever betraying that spirit or thatthirst for life. Like in Dan Ireland's "The Whole Wide World", thatlaunched the career of Rene Zellwegger, "Jolene" may do the same forJessica Chastain. I don't think I'll see a better performance thisyear.

    4. alithiapa from Boston, MA
      30 Mar 2012, 2:34 pm

      As a foster kid tossed from home-to-home throughout southern Louisianaonly to land with hard-earned education in Boston working at HarvardMedical School and living in the penthouse of the Ritz, I can tell youthat I identify with this movie. There is something luring about thedisenfranchised vulnerable that makes beautiful for predators (evenwell-intended predators with good intentions)- mark. I am most curiousto learn where and with whom the author did his research to accuratelyreflect the subtle, but violent truths of this character Jolene. Hecaptures the dichotomy of her seeming power but destined powerlessnesswith piercing accuracy.

    5. napierslogs from Ontario, Canada
      30 Mar 2012, 2:34 pm

      "Jolene" is quite a film. It's about the journey of life for Jolene(Jessica Chastain), who is quite a character. A girl who was left to beraised by the authorities, she is itching to experience more of theworld and be happy—the type of girl who could get hurt. But Jolene hasan indescribable quality that makes people fall in love with her, lustafter her, commit crimes for her and then go crazy, and generally inthat order. Likelihood is they'll get hurt instead of Jolene.

      The film strikes a remarkable balance between the quirky, comediccharms of the characters and the somber and serious situations thatJolene gets herself into. Although, as a caveat, I do recognize thecritics' complaints that that balance can be quite jarring. The journeythe film takes us on with this unforgettable character is afascinating, funny and joyful one, but also at times, harrowing. Crimesof passion, crimes in the name of God, and crimes for money — all forJolene — are all committed. No body is left unturned.

      The path the film took to get to us is almost as tumultuous as that ofits heroine. Tumbling through the small film festival circuit in 2008and 2009, it didn't get a distribution deal until 2010. And then itonly opened in a handful of screens. But now everybody can finally seethis extraordinary film and extraordinary actress. Jessica Chastain isstarring in Terrence Malick's highly-anticipated, masterpiece-to-be"The Tree of Life". It's time to meet this star-in-the-making in"Jolene".

      "Jolene" captured my heart, and then attempted to stomp all over it,but the film leaves its mark, as does the character Jolene, as doesChastain. I'm still not exactly sure how to take it, but it was anamazing experience.

    6. jmsquibb from United States
      30 Mar 2012, 2:34 pm

      This movie is very dark but it shows what life can be like for somechildren growing up in foster care. It is easy to forget that Jolene isactually a child when she gets married the first time. Jolene is achild without a childhood and she uses sex to get what she wants/needs.Jolene does not seem to make life happen, she just goes through lifeletting things happen to her. It seems that she just wants to be lovedand cared for. However, she does not know how to do that the right way.There were a lot of sex and nude scenes. I am not sure that all of itwas necessary. Many scenes are difficult to watch if you are a womanand it is easy to feel sad for the character Jolene. I had hoped thatJolene would have a happy ending. However, it is meant to be realisticand not wrapped in a sweet little package. It was okay to watch oncebut I would not watch it again.

    7. johno-21 from United States
      30 Mar 2012, 2:34 pm

      I recently saw this at the 2009 Palm Springs International FilmFestival. Based on the novel Jolene: A Life by E.L Doctorow anddirected by Dan Ireland this film takes through the experiences,marriages and loves of Jolene beginning at age 15 when she is a childbride after living in foster homes in a childhood of abuse and takes usthrough a series of abuse full and exploitive relationships. Lots ofinteresting characters that we meet briefly along the way includingperformances by such noted actors as Theresa Russell, Denise Richards,Rupert Friend and Chazz Palminteri. Jessica Chastain is clearly thestar in her debut role in a feature film. She's fantastic and reallymakes what might otherwise be an ordinary made-for-TV Lifetime orHallmark type movie. Dan Ireland directs with wonderful photography byveteran cinematographer Claudio Rocha. Chastain is in virtually everyscene and she looks like she may be a star on the rise. She also tellsthe story in narration as the different chapters of her young life arepresented. Director Ireland was at my screening for an audience Q&A. Iwould give this an 8.0 out of 10 and recommend it.

    8. parkerr86302 from arizona
      30 Mar 2012, 2:34 pm

      I have not read the E.L. Doctorow novel this is based on, but I'mguessing the film takes a lot of liberties, as Doctorow is usually moresophisticated than this. Jolene (Jessica Chastain) is a Southern-friedchild bride who starts a torrid affair with her husband's uncle. Shelands in a juvenile detention facility where a butch lesbian guard hasdesigns on her. She escapes, drifts across the country having sex witha variety of sleazy creeps, and becomes a tattoo artist and a Vegasstripper. She finally marries a born-again Christian who (of course)turns out to be a fanatical, wife-beating lout (it has been light-yearssince we've seen a positive depiction of a Christian in a movie). Theplot sounds like an homage to a dumb, 1970s drive-in flick, but JOLENEtakes itself too seriously for that, which is its downfall. This is notfun or entertaining—it is ugly garbage loaded with nudity, graphic(and unerotic) sex scenes, and scenes of violence against women. I amastonished by the positive reviews here at IMDb that claim the film is"sweet" and "charming"—I saw none of those qualities. But sinceothers did, judge for yourself.

      On a trivia note, a couple of scenes were shot in my old stompinggrounds of Prescott, Arizona. At the time, local news reported thatDonald Sutherland was in the film. Since he is nowhere to be seen inthe finished product, I must conclude this report was in error, or elsehe had a cameo that ended up on the cutting room floor, which wasprobably all the better for him.

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