All We Had

Katie Holmes directs herself in All We Had, and proves she isn’t afraid to paint herself in an unfavourable light. Rita Carmichael is good at loving men but terrible at picking them. When another loser reaches his expiration date, it’s her daughter Ruthie (Stefania Owen) that knows it’s time to cut ties and get the hell out of dodge. The problem is that Rita and Ruthie are chronically broke. Rita self-medicates for her crappy childhood with nullcheap booze. Between men they live out of their piece of shit car. They have almost nothing going for them but Rita makes keeping Ruthie out of child services her top priority, and so far, she’s always succeeded.

This time, though, it’s going to be extra difficult. Their car breaks down literally in front of the greasy spoon where they just dined-and-dashed and it looks like they’re stuck in whatever crummy small town this is.

All We Had is not a great movie, but it’s not bad. It’s just that Katie Holmes is so hellbent on making this an inspirational story of redemption, she leans heavily on tired formula schtick. Addictions, childhood trauma, financial crisis: this movie has it all, everything except focus. All We Had is the kind of movie you’ll make excuses for – “it means well” you’ll say, and mean  it. But that’s not quite enough. There’s not enough skill here to pull meaning from the good intentions. But if you’re willing to watch Katie Holmes try, All We Had is good for 1 hour and 45 minutes of trial and error and smudged eyeliner.

17 thoughts on “All We Had

    1. Jay Post author

      She’s with Jamie Foxx now. She was in Paris to visit him this weekend (he’s making a new Robin Hood movie, apparently) but you know who else is shooting in Paris – Suri’s dad, and Foxx’s former Collateral co-star. Awkward?


  1. J.

    1 hour and 45 minutes seems like a bit too much time to invest in a movie that’ll leave me thinking “mnah”.


  2. Susan Leighton

    I wonder why certain actors insist on directing? This is a question for the ages. Sometimes, people who can’t play a sport very well, let’s say, make excellent coaches because they understand the sport. In Katie’s case, she isn’t that great of an actress (sorry) and it sounds like she is not much of a director. Then again, it is her maiden effort. Perhaps she should just become a fashion maven. Good review, Jay.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. kmSalvatore

    I was surprised at how much I liked her when she played Jackie I the Kennedy series on PBS. I now see her I a whole different light.. it must be Jamie Foxx’s guiding Hand:) lol, I’m sure ill watch this .. ill find it eventually on one of our channels 🙂 and yeah.. id watch it.


  4. AP

    Much darker and more visceral than I expected. I think Katie Holmes did an excellent portrayal of a woman without anything as her and her and her daughter as they go from crisis to crisis hanging on by by a thread getting by anyway they can.



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