In a year rife with powerhouse blockbusters and independent wonders, few films had the heartfelt reality check to match director Brad Silberling’s “Moonlight Mile.” Inspired by Silberling’s own life, “Mile” takes place in an early 1970’s New England town and discusses the transitions that accompany life after a tragic death.

Dustin Hoffman and Susan Sarandon play the grieving parents Ben and JoJo Floss. The couple, together with Joe Nast (Jake Gyllenhall), is forced to deal with the murder of their daughter only weeks before her would-be wedding to Joe.

Out of such turbulent times, the trio lean on each other and evoke some brilliantly poignant moments. Newcomer Ellen Pompeo fits into the mold as Joe’s bridge love interest that helps him move beyond his troubles. Such a combination of unmatched talent, along with Silberling’s knack for awkward drama, make the film a pleasant life-lesson and a joy to endure.

Similarly interesting and touching extras are provided on the DVD. Complete with the requisite director’s commentary, the package also includes deleted scenes and a featurette of the film’s journey to the screen.

While it would be nice to have seen more features, or at least some behind the scenes glimpses, these few pieces add to the emotional power of the film. Hearing the actors and Silberling discuss the process and the experience is quite interesting, and the featurette adds an extra sentimentality that does a great service to the enter film experience.

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