The Magnificent Misfits

Take a couple of awkward loners. Throw in a reclusive dwarf. Now put them all in the middle of New Jersey.

A recipe for box-office gold? You’d think not.

Yet The Station Agent, which opens nationwide today, is a film that transcends its aggressively wacky plotline. On the surface, it’s the tale of a grieving mother who refuses to see her husband, a sexy loudmouth who runs a food truck, and, yes, a dwarf who inherits a train depot. Never mind what they possibly could have in common. Ten minutes into this gorgeous and funny portrait of unlikely friendships and unconventional love, you won’t care. (When the credits rolled, we begged the projectionist to start from the top.)

The first feature from director Tom McCarthy, The Station Agent picked up audience and screenwriting prizes at Sundance. Which ought to give hope to all struggling first-time directors.

Not to mention weirdos and misfits everywhere.

The Station Agent opens nationwide today.