Luke Wilson trades booze for miracles in new movie

Fri Aug 15, 2008 6:23pm EDT
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By Iain Blair

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - Miracles and booze -- an unlikely pairing that immediately attracted star Luke Wilson when he first read the script of "Henry Poole Is Here," a quirky film drama that debuts in theaters on Friday.

Wilson told Reuters he connected to the seemingly-doomed protagonist, Henry Poole, and the movie's poignant, uplifting message about personal redemption.

The 36 year-old actor, who along with his brother Owen Wilson made a name for himself in low-budget films such as "Bottle Rocket" and "Rushmore," said the combination of both drama and comedy in the tale of spiritual awakening also appealed to him.

"It has a lot of sly humor in it," Wilson said. "Even when all Henry wants to do is buy booze, he keeps getting dragged into these conversations, and I love the idea of this curmudgeon who has to deal with people despite himself."

When Poole learns he has a fatal disease, he moves back to his old neighborhood to drink himself to death. But ruining his self-destructive plan are two neighbors and what may, or may not, be a miraculous water stain on the side of his house.

On one side of Poole lives a nosy, slightly crazy woman, Esperanza (Oscar nominee Adriana Barraza), who thinks she sees the face of God in the stain. On the other side is a single mom, Dawn (Radha Mitchell), who cares for a mute daughter.

Esperanza's faith coupled with Dawn's friendship, conspire to bring Henry back from the brink of a major self-disaster.


<p>File photo shows Luke Wilson at the 2008 Sundance Film Festival in Park City, Utah January 21, 2008. REUTERS/Fred Prouser</p>