The United States of Leland

Rated 3.0 Smart, handsome and outwardly normal suburban high-school student Leland Fitzgerald (Ryan Gosling) commits a murder on an otherwise ordinary weekday in California. The shocking crime ignites an investigation in which his family, friends and a compassionate but troubled juvenile-hall teacher (Don Cheadle) all struggle to determine why and how a young man of such promise could be involved in such cold-blooded violence. Leland says very little to clear up the mystery at hand, and so does this rather pretentious drama. The film wants to dissect the moral dilemmas at the heart of violence and the moral ambiguity of us all in a world in which one has to believe that life is more than the sum of its parts. The film was written and directed by Matthew Ryan Hoge.