Benny & Joon (1993)

Benny closed himself off to relationships since he became a caregiver to his mentally ill sister, Joon when their parents died. He hires an endless string of caregivers but none seem to be a good fit for her. During a weekly poker game, in which each losing hand gets an undesirable prize, e.g. “salad shooter” or “regrout my shower tiles,” Joon acquires an opponent’s shy illiterate cousin, Sam, who patterns himself after legendary silent film star, Buster Keaton.

Initially, Benny is angry about the obligation but soon accepts all the quirks that come along with Sam’s cleaning, cooking and entertainment. Best of all, Sam’s playfulness placates Joon and encourages Sam to open up a bit. A romance between Sam and Joon begins to blossom, facilitated by a local diner waitress, for who Sam starts to develop feelings. Slowly but surely, everything seems to be progressing, which makes Benny feel like he’s losing control. He reacts by micromanaging everyone around him, which starts a chain reaction that sends Joon to the hospital. There’s more than enough blame to go around but only person with enough love and compassion to bring them all back together.

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