From first-time writer/director Elizabeth Chomko, What They Had centers on a family in crisis. During a bout of dementia, Ruth (Blythe Danner) gets out of bed at night and wanders off into a blizzard. Ruth’s brief disappearance triggers the homecoming of her daughter Bridget (Hilary Swank) and teenage granddaughter Emma (Taissa Farmiga). The episode also renews lifelong tensions between stubborn patriarch Burt (Robert Forster) and estranged son Nicky (Michael Shannon). As they all debate placing Ruth into a memory-care facility, family ties begin to fray, rekindling a rivalry between the adult siblings. Never sentimental and at times unexpectedly funny, What They Had is a heartfelt look at the trials some face to keep a family together through troubling times.

 

 

Director: Elizabeth Chomko
Writer: Elizabeth Chomko
Producers: Albert Berger, Sefton Fincham, Bill Holderman, Tyler Jackson
Cast: Hilary Swank, Michael Shannon, Robert Forster, Blythe Danner, Taissa Farmiga
Cinematographer: Roberto Schaefer
Editor: Tom McArdle
Country: USA
Runtime: 101 minutes