• Sat. Jul 20th, 2024

“Joe” is a gritty independent crime drama film set in a small Texas town, revolving around the character of Joe Ransom, played by . Joe is an ex-convict who lives a troubled and aimless life. He works as a day laborer and leads a rough existence. When he meets Gary, a young teenager seeking work, Joe sees an opportunity for redemption and takes the boy under his wing. As their friendship develops, Joe becomes a mentor figure to Gary, teaching him about life and helping him deal with his abusive father. However, their bond is soon tested as both face the consequences of their troubled pasts.


“Joe” received positive reviews from critics and was praised for its raw and authentic portrayal of working-class characters and their struggles. 's performance as Joe was widely acclaimed, with many considering it one of his best in recent years. The film was lauded for its realistic depiction of the hardships faced by the characters and its exploration of themes such as redemption, friendship, and the cycle of violence.

The direction by was commended for its restrained yet powerful approach, capturing the gritty atmosphere of the setting. The screenplay, adapted by Gary Hawkins from the novel by Larry Brown, was also highly regarded for its well-developed characters and intense storytelling.


Joe Ransom, an ex-convict struggling to keep his anger in check, works as a day laborer in a small town in Texas. One day, he meets Gary, a teenager looking for work, and offers him a job. Gary's family life is difficult, with an abusive father and a negligent mother. As Joe and Gary spend time together, they develop a bond and become unlikely friends.

Joe tries to protect Gary from his abusive father and offers him guidance and support. However, the consequences of Joe's violent tendencies and Gary's volatile home life begin to catch up with them. As tensions escalate, Joe finds himself torn between helping Gary escape his abusive family and confronting his own demons.


While “Joe” did not receive widespread recognition at major awards ceremonies, 's performance was praised by critics and earned him several nominations and wins at smaller film festivals. Cage won the Best Actor award at the Austin Film Critics Association Awards and the Stockholm Film Festival, among others.


“Joe” gained a moderate level of popularity among cinephiles and fans of character-driven dramas. While it did not achieve significant commercial success, the film garnered a dedicated following due to its compelling performances, gritty atmosphere, and realistic storytelling. It continues to be appreciated by audiences who enjoy thought-provoking and emotionally impactful cinema.

Directed by
Screenplay by Gary Hawkins
Based on Joe
by Larry Brown
Produced by
Cinematography Tim Orr
Edited by Colin Patton
Music by
  • Jeff McIlwain
  • David Wingo
Distributed by Roadside Attractions
Release dates
  • August 30, 2013 (Venice)
  • April 11, 2014 (United States)
Running time
117 minutes
Country United States
Language English
Budget $4 million
Box office $2.4 million


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