Director: Paul Zehrer
Screenwriters: Paul Zehrer

Institute History


blessing is a moving story about the delicate balance in relationships. Detailing the dependence, love, rage and hope that bind a particular family on a Wisconsin farm, the story speaks not only to Americans, but to families the world over. Ranging from intimate family drama to tragedy in its most classic form. Paul Zehrer's debut feature is a true and heartrending portrait of the ever changing dynamics of family life. Randi, portrayed triumphantly by Melora Griffis, is twenty-three and a dreamer. Although she is still milking cows on her family's farm, her insular life is brightened by an oversized satellite dish, rock 'n' rail and her passion to go to the ocean. Standing in the way are her jealous mother, her overworked father and her quirky and lovable ten-year-old brother. She finds her opportunity to escape when Lyle, the local milk· truck driver/astrologer, offers her his love. Randi is caught between her own desires and her family's expectations, but somehow she summons the courage to face her father's resistance head-on. It takes a rare film to master maturation as a theme with the greatest subtlety.

Zehrer manages to capture the mysterious moment in a young woman's life when she sees her father as a man, No longer a villain or a superhero, Dad is suddenly human, With this realization comes a flood of emotion—pity, understanding, and an awareness of vulnerability and sexuality. Randi rides the wave of these feelings and renews her relationship with her father. The little girl in her fades away like a changing season, and the woman comes fully into bloom. Beautiful photography and strong performances add to the charm of blessing. Notably, Guy Griffis, Melora's real dad, plays the Learllke father. The truth of the blood relationship at the core of this drama is amplified by the depth of the dramatic one.

Friday Jan 21 1:20 pm
Holiday Village Cinema II

Sunday Jan 23 3:00 pm
Prospector Square Theatre

Thursday Jan 21 10:20 am
Holiday Village Cinema II

Friday Jan 28 6:30 pm
Park City Library Center

Saturday Jan 29 2:00 pm
Sundance Screening Room


— Catherine Schulman

Screening Details

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