Bastard Out of Carolina is a 1996 American drama movie produced by Showtime Networks and directed by Anjelica Huston. It is based on the 1992 novel by Dorothy Allison and adapted for the screen by Anne Meredith. Jena Malone stars as a poor, physically abused, and sexually harassed girl in her debut.
In 1997, the Canadian Maritime movie Classification Board banned the movie from theatrical release and video. The video was eventually released after an appeal.
The movie won an Emmy for Outstanding Cast in a Miniseries or Special (Linda Lowy) and was nominated for Outstanding Director of a Miniseries or Special (Anjelica Huston), Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Miniseries or Special (Glenne Headly), and Outstanding Motion Picture Made for Television ( Amanda DiGiulio, Gary Hoffman). The movie was screened in the Un Certain Regard section at the 1996 Cannes movie Festival. Now, know about the Bastard Out Of Carolina movie.
“Bastard Out Of Carolina.” Ruth Anne, nicknamed “Bone” Boatwright, is a young girl growing up in Greenville, South Carolina in the 1950s. Born out of wedlock to Anney, Bone lives with her mother and their extended family in a poor part of town. Anney loves Bone, but she is still a child herself, tired of work and in need of attention and admiration. Bone and Anney almost always have to face the shame of being stamped “FALSE” on Bone’s birth certificate. When the county courthouse burns down, Anney is happy that the copy of Bone’s birth certificate no longer exists.
After her kind, hard-working first husband, Lyle Parsons, the father of Bonea’s half-sister, is killed in a car accident, Anney remarries a man named Glen Waddell, who seems attentive until Anney and Glen’s child dies at birth. Glen first harasses Bone as he waits in the car for the birth of his child. Frustrated by the loss of his long-awaited son, Anney’s inability to have more children and his own inability to control his temper and hold down a steady job, Glen begins regularly physically and sexually abusing Bone, beating her in the bathroom.
Bone wakes his mother in the middle of the night, barely able to walk due to the immense pain she is in. Anney takes her to the hospital, where the doctor scolds Anney for beating the child so badly that her coccyx is broken. All Bone says is ‘Mommy.’ Anney takes Bone to the car and leaves the hospital against the doctor’s wishes, slapping Glen’s hand as he tries to comfort the girl.
Saddened and angered by her new husband’s behavior towards her child, Anney takes Bone to her sister Alma’s house to recuperate. However, once Bone is better, Anney returns to Glen after vowing never to touch Bone again. However, the abuse resumes not long after.
As Anney reads with her mom in a coffee shop, she asks Bone to go and stay with her Aunt Ruth because she is very sick. Ruth asks Bone about Glen and if he ever hurt her. Bone says no and the two bond, listening to gospel music on the radio. After visiting Dee Dee, Ruth dies of an illness. At Aunt Ruth’s funeral, Bone’s aunt Raylene finds her in the bathroom drunk after drinking too much alcohol, and when he tries to take her to bed, she discovers algae on her legs and alerts the girl’s uncles Earl, Wade, and Travis. and the man who beat Glen unconscious for what he did to her.
Bone is sent to live with her aunts and eventually tells her mother that she can love Glen, but Bone will never return to him. Finally, Glen shows up when the aunts are out and tries to get her to come back. But she refuses, asks him to leave, and then threatens to tell Anne everything he did to her. When she fights back, he punches her and then rapes her. Anney discovers the rape and retaliates by hitting Glen over the head with a glass bottle, shattering it, and causing his head to bleed.
She rips it off, kicks and throws it off Bone, yelling at him, then carries her out of the house away from him and into her car. Glen stumbles out of the house after Anney, shouting his apologies and saying he can’t live without her. She yells at him to stay away from her and Bone. He then puts Bone in his car. When Glen tries to comfort her, she pushes him away, gets into her car, starts it, and tries to drive away, trying to leave him for good.
Glen then leans against the car door and bangs his head against it repeatedly, yelling at Anney to kill him if he can’t be with her anymore. Instead, she pats him on the head for forgiveness, trusting that she will never hurt Bone again. This makes Bone feel disgusted and overwhelmed, causing her to hate her own mother for the first time. Eventually, Anney returns to Glen.
Moments later, Bone is visited in the hospital by Aunt Raylene. When the police try to question her about who brutally raped her, she still refuses to reveal that it was Glen and calls out for her mother, who is nowhere to be found. In the end, Bone is able to stay with her Aunt Raylene and Uncle Earl, far from the reach of those who would harm her.
Her mother visits her once more to deliver a copy of her birth certificate without the “INCORRECT” mark and apologizes for what happened, saying that she loved Glen too much to see him for real and telling her that he loves her before you leave and rejoin Glen. Staying with her Aunt Raylene and Uncle Earl, Bone weeps for her mother’s sacrifice and the freedom she has finally achieved in this last tearful farewell. Her last words are spoken by Laura Dern at the end of the movie.
“Who was Mom? What did she want to be or do before I was born? Once I was born, her hopes turned and I climbed up her life like a flower that reaches for the sun. Her life folded into mine. Who Would I Be, when I was 15, 20, or 30? Would I be as strong as her? So hungry for love? So desperate, determined, and ashamed? I wouldn’t know, but I was already who I would be. Someone like her, like my mom, a boatman, bastard, Bastard Out Of Carolina.”
Bastard Out of Carolina Ending, Explained: What Happened At The End?
Bone starts living with her aunts. Although Anney is quite unhappy without her and Glen feels terrible. When her guardians are not home, Glen walks over and tries to force her to return to her home. When she refuses, he rapes her. Anney finds out about the rape and smashes a bottle over Glen’s head, causing him to bleed profusely.
Anney tries to leave with Bono, even as Glen screams his apologies at the top of his lungs. Her mother tells him to stay away from them, and she feels like she’s finally leaving for good. Although Glen starts banging his head on the car and asks Anney to kill him if she can’t be with him because he loves her. Soon the men forgive and unfortunately return to him. As for Bone, she talks about how she is now disgusted and hates her own mother for the first time.
The police then place Bone with her uncle and aunt Raylene. Her mother visits one last time before the end of the movie, bringing a birth certificate with no illegitimate markings. Her mother could choose between Glen’s love or her daughter’s support and chose to go back to the man who was constantly raping her daughter. The movie ends with Bone crying as he describes himself as the Bastard Out of Carolina.
Anney, Bone, and Glen start living together in a beautiful house. Their life is perfect until Anney becomes pregnant but loses her baby in childbirth. It’s all a tragedy that befell Bone when Glen began abusing and harassing her. There were reports that Anney could not have more children. Glen becomes overly furious, but he doesn’t show his anger at Anney, but rather at Bone. He begins beating and sexually harassing Bone in the bathroom or anywhere he finds her alone.
One night Bone can’t walk because of all the injuries. Anney takes her to the hospital and it turns out that Bone has a broken coccyx because Glen hit her so hard that night. Anney now knows the truth and slaps Glen on the hand as he tries to make amends. Clearly wanting to take care of her child, she lets the little girl lives with her sister Alma’s child to heal and overcome the trauma.
Glen tries to become a better man and promises to never abuse Bone. Anney will return to him once Bone recovers. Although the abuse starts moments later and Bone is now trapped in the house with Glen again. The plot begins to unfold as Anneya’s relatives begin to discover the truth. One of her uncles beats Glen terribly for what he did to the innocent child. “Bastard Out Of Carolina.”