Starring Gwyneth Paltrow, Garrett Hedlund, Tim McGraw, Leighton Meester
Directed by Shana Feste
Rated PG-13;117 minutes
Theatrical Release Dec. 22, 2010
DVD Release April 12, 2011
A down-home drama set in the world of country music, Country Strong stars Gwyneth Paltrow as Kelly Canter, a fallen singing superstar trying to regain her crown after an alcohol-fueled incident derailed her career.
Real-life country superstar Tim McGraw convincingly fills out the role of her manager and husband. Leighton Meester, best known for her role on TV's Gossip Girl, plays the young aw-shucks newcomer threatening to upstage her. And Tron star Garrett Hedlund is the studly honky-tonk hunk caught up in two tangled sets of heartstrings.
Is Kelly “country strong” enough to make a comeback, give up the bottle and stand by her man?
Country music fans will likely forgive the plot's bumpy potholes and melodramatic meandering and simply enjoy the ride, which hums along with a soundtrack of recognizable country gems (from Faith Hill, Lee Ann Womack, Ronnie Dunn, Sara Evans and Hank Williams Jr.) and original soundtrack tunes that give the story a sheen of modern-day Music Row.
DVD extras include a full music video of Country Strong, and an extended performance of “Shake That Thing,” both performed in the movie by Paltrow.