'Saint Ralph' - Movie Review

Ralph Walker (Adam Butcher) is a ninth grade student at a Catholic school. Since his father died and his mother is in hospital, he's living alone at his house. The movie opens with a sequence of masturbation jokes to establish that he's a young teen in a humiliating life. I barely made it through that. But if you can struggle through, his crazy plan to perform the miracle of winning the Boston Marathon because a miracle is the only thing that will bring his mother out of a coma - well, it plays out fairly well. He's a little bit nuts, but he'd have to be to attempt this. And he's determined, and eventually convinces a priest who was a former marathoner himself to help out.

For me, it was a great big dose of Canadian content, although I hadn't even realised it when I started watching the movie: Gordon Pinsent was the first hint, the weird mix of accents another ... and finally the fact that it was set (unrepentantly) in Hamilton. And the conflict resolution ... the priest who coaches Ralph gets in trouble with the head of the school, and you figure he's going down. But instead we get a polite and classically Canadian defusing.

Too much humiliation at the beginning, but a lovely cast and a charming script made it, ultimately, quite a good experience. Recommended.