Film: Henry Poole Is Here

It's just a stain...
A 2008 film by Mark Pellington, Henry Poole Is Here tells the story of Henry Poole and his struggles with a stain on his stucco wall. Better than it sounds, Henry Poole is a man who's moved into a small California neighborhood and bought a house. When a stucco repair is recognized by his neighbor as resembling Jesus, he finds himself subjected to pilgrims, a church investigation, and burning questions on the meaning of life and the futility of worrying about things you can't change.

This movie contains examples of:

  • Christianity Is Catholic: Borderline case. Almost all imagery is of the Catholic variety, but California does have a large Catholic community, and Catholics are more known for their miracles.
  • Cute Mute: Millie hasn't talked for over a year, ever since her father left them. The visage on the wall apparently heals her. When she learns that Henry is going to die soon, she relapses and only talks again after she learns that Henry isn't going anywhere.
  • Earn Your Happy Ending: Henry definitely has to work at it, including accepting that he may need help, and may be worthy of being saved.
  • Maybe Magic, Maybe Mundane: Does the wall grant miracles? In almost every case, the results could be explained away.
  • Soap Opera Disease: Henry suffers from a poorly explained and rare disease which is nonetheless known to be fatal within a few months. And there are apparently no symptoms until the virus "steamrolls through your system" and you die.
  • Title Drop: On the underpass and within his house, "Henry Poole was Here" was what Henry wrote to try to convince himself that he's worthy of existence despite his ugly family past. After he learns his disease was cured (or incorrectly diagnosed), he changes it to "Henry Poole is Here".