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Don’t be nervous about the Blumhouse Productions logo at the beginning of the film: “Adopt a Highway,” in which a newly released and totally rootless ex-con played by Ethan Hawke discovers a baby girl in a dumpster, doesn’t follow whatever path you might expect (or fear) that company to do with this premise. Hawke doesn’t harbor any “Sinister” intentions, nor is the baby possessed by demons — only colic. In fact, this sweet and simple little movie couldn’t be any further removed from the horrifying likes of “Get Out” and “Insidious.” The only scary thing about it might be the scene in which our hapless hero goes to an internet cafe and literally googles “Can I keep a baby if I find one?” Twenty years in jail can do a lot of damage to a man’s common sense.
Written and directed by Logan Marshall-Green, a successful Hollywood actor and noted Tom Hardy lookalike who was last seen in Blumhouse’s “Upgrade” last summer, “Adopt a Highway” is a gentle drama that’s often as clumsy and meandering as its title. Blink during the opening credits and you might not catch why the movie is named after a popular volunteer program. When Russell Millings (Hawke) was in high school, he made headlines for his public service work; when he was arrested for his third non-violent drug offense a few years later, the headlines changed.
Victim - Harsh - Strikes - Rule - Point
The victim of a harsh “three strikes” rule that was struck down at some point during his two decades in a maximum-security prison, Russell stumbles out of the clink as a stunted adolescent with nothing but his name, a stopwatch, and a key around his neck. It’s as if he took a nap during the prime of his life only to wake up a couple of decades later to find that...
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It had only one fault, it was useless.