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Desert Blue is a 1998 American comedy-drama film written and directed by Morgan J. Freeman, starring Brendan Sexton III, Kate Hudson, Christina Ricci, Casey Affleck, Sara Gilbert and John Heard.[1]

Desert Blue
Desert blue.jpg
Theatrical release poster
Directed byMorgan J. Freeman
Produced by
Written byMorgan J. Freeman
Music byVytas Nagisetty
CinematographyEnrique Chediak
Edited bySabine Hoffmann
Distributed byFranchise Pictures
Release date
  • September¬†12,¬†1998¬†(1998-09-12)
Running time
90 minutes
CountryUnited States



A rising Hollywood starlet (Hudson) becomes "marooned" in a small desert town while on a roadtrip with her father. There, she gets to know the town's rather eccentric residents, including one (Ricci) whose hobby is pipe bombs and another (Sexton) who is trying to carry out his father's dream of building a waterpark in the desert.



The soundtrack features songs by The Candyskins, Rilo Kiley, Janis Ian, and others.


Rotten Tomatoes, review aggregator, reports that 37% of 19 surveyed critics gave the film a positive review; the average rating was 5/10.[2] Glenn Lovell of Variety called it "a cloying, mechanically plotted comedy".[3] Lawrence van Gelder of The New York Times wrote, "[T]he graceful literary and directorial touch of Morgan J. Freeman turns these youngsters into individuals rather than cinema's customary caricatures".[4] John Anderson of the Los Angeles Times wrote, "It's a small story, perhaps even an ephemeral movie, but Desert Blue also has a novelistic capacity for character and setting, without either the maudlin sentimentality or gratuitous vulgarity of most teen-oriented movies."[5] Roger Ebert of The Chicago Sun-Times rated it three out of four stars and compared it to The Last Picture Show and U Turn, saying that it is the "herbal tea" version of the latter.[6] Lisa Schwarzbaum of Entertainment Weekly rated it C and described the setting as "yet another indie drama set in a burg reminiscent, by way of aggressive eccentricity, of TV's Northern Exposure."[7]


  1. ^ Van Gelder, Lawrence (1998). "Desert Blue". The New York Times.
  2. ^ "Desert Blue (1999)". Rotten Tomatoes. Retrieved 2015-01-22.
  3. ^ Lovell, Glenn (1998-09-18). "Review: 'Desert Blue'". Variety. Retrieved 2015-01-22.
  4. ^ van Gelder, Lawrence (1999-06-04). "Desert Blue (1998)". The New York Times. Retrieved 2015-01-22.
  5. ^ Anderson, John (1999-06-18). "Seductive 'Desert' Takes a Charming Slap at Reality". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 2015-01-22.
  6. ^ Ebert, Roger (1999-09-10). "Desert Blue". Retrieved 2015-01-22.
  7. ^ Schwarzbaum, Lisa (1999-06-18). "Desert Blue (1999)". Entertainment Weekly (490). Retrieved 2015-01-22.

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