“A compelling and bittersweet documentary.”
“Lindalee never sentimentalizes her subject. She presents Abby as honestly as she finds him. With so little to work with – a handful of snapshots, blurred recollections- it’s amazing the way she has recreated a father she never knew. This is his touching memorial.”
“Abby, I Hardly Knew Ya is a profoundly personal documentary. Tracey brought warmth and empathy to her conversations with the derelicts who drank with her father.”
“Lindalee Tracey’s honest emotions are continually on display in Abby, I Hardly Knew Ya, a 60-minute documentary which stitches together a moving tantalizing and frustrating portrait of her father from the snatches of memory offered by relatives friends and skid-row cronies.”
Lindalee Tracey never knew her father. He left in the dim first months of her life and died a penniless alcoholic. Her childhood cautioned by his failure, she was taught to bury him long before he died. Fatherless as she is, she is still her father’s daughter.
So with a daughter’s need for meaning and memory and explanations, Lindalee sets out to reclaim her derelict father, determined to weed through the facts and fictions of his life-to redeem, to somehow forgive.
She discovers that Abby Tracey was a petty crook and a con artist-as charming as a snake in Eden. From cherubic Irish alter boy to attentive uncle to pathetic street rubbie, Lindalee examines his life through surviving relatives, friends and the public record. But she sees her father perhaps most clearly in the tired souls of other destitute men, whom she speaks to with warmth and compassion.
Abby, I Hardly Knew Ya is a psychological and emotional journey, as Lindalee Tracey lovingly pieces together the shards of a life almost erased by time and circumstance.
Produced by White Pine Pictures in association with TVOntario, CFCF 12, Vision TV, Knowledge Network, SCN, with the participation of Telefilm Canada, the Ontario Film Development Corporation, Rogers Telefund, with the assistance of the Ontario Ministry of Health