The new addition to my Movies You Might Not Know list is “All Is Bright,” a 2013 movie I’d never heard of until it was mentioned recently in a podcast by Paul Giamatti, who starred and executive produced.

He plays Dennis, who has just gotten out of prison in Quebec after four years. On parole, with no money and no job, he ends up back in his hometown, where he wants to see his young daughter, Michi. But his ex-wife, Therese (Amy Landecker), stops him before he enters the house because she has told the kid that Dennis is dead. Not only that, but Therese is now in a relationship with Dennis’ longtime friend and partner in crime, Rene (Paul Rudd).

After finding Rene at a bar and punching him in the face, Dennis talks his old pal into letting him go along on a trip to Brooklyn, where they will sell Christmas trees they truck down from Canada. There, they find business is very slow until Rene puts on a strong Quebecois accent and pretends he’s a lumberjack-turned-tree-expert, which somehow convinces New Yorkers to start buying their trees.

Meanwhile, Dennis encounters Olga (Sally Hawkins), a housekeeper staying in a nearby home owned by her employers, two dentists who are away on vacation. Olga’s a little kooky, but Dennis likes her, and as he sets up a tree for her, they strike up a friendship. But he’s still frustrated because his ex-wife won’t accept his collect calls and allow him to talk to Michi.

As you might be able to tell, this is a small movie with a lot of dialogue and not a lot of action — other than Dennis intimidating a rival who is selling trees from Vermont. But what makes “All Is Bright” so enjoyable is the acting clinic Giamatti puts on. With mutton chops and a droopy mustache, he’s perfect as Dennis, a stoop-shouldered loser who claims he’s gone straight but has no employment prospects or plans of any kind beyond tomorrow.

Meanwhile, Rudd resists playing Rene for laughs, instead making him just as desperate, needy, and sad as Dennis. The always-reliable Landecker and Hawkins round out the cast with solid, quiet performances and a sympathetic chemistry with the two male stars.

I wouldn’t call “All Is Bright” a great movie, but my wife and I enjoyed it enough to give it a 7.5 out of 10.

“All Is Bright” barely got a theatrical release and did minimal box office, but it’s available now for a few bucks on most video-on-demand platforms.