Pictures of Hollis Woods
Abandoned as a baby, 12-year-old Hollis Woods (Jodelle Ferland) has been in more foster homes than she cares to remember. Edna Reilly (Alfre Woodard), her patient but persistent social worker, finally places Hollis with Josie Cahill (Sissy Spacek), a retired teacher who shares Hollis’s passion for art. But Josie begins exhibiting signs of Alzheimer’s, and Hollis fears her days with Josie may be numbered.
Hollis Woods has not had a permanent home since she was born. When she is sent to Josie Cahill’s home, an artist and retired school teacher, she soon learns that she and Josie have a lot in common. Her defenses begin to drop and she finds herself feeling at home. She also winds up caring for Josie at times, who is becoming increasingly forgetful. There are some funny moments in the film, including Josie’s comment that, “Anything could happen. We could win a million dollars!” To which Hollis replies, “Or get hit by an asteroid!” Hollis deals with memories of her past, when she lived with a family she could have been happy with, if not for a terrible accident which drove her away.
This is a warm and sensitively told story, and newcomer Jodelle Ferland is a natural, giving a nuanced performance as young Hollis. There are some minor issues which we list in the content descriptions below. This is a warm holiday story and we award it our Dove Seal, along with five doves, our highest rating.