Thursday, 23 February 2012

Not so revolutionary

The latest film I watched was Revolutionary Road, the second of the Kate Winslet films which came out almost back to back, but this time she was paired with her Titanic co-star Leo DiCaprio.
In this they play husband and wife living in the suburbs with two children.  He works in a job he doesn't like, for a firm that his father spent years working for, while she stays at home failing to become an actress.  The life they envisaged for themselves several years earlier hasn't quite materialised.
One day it get's too much for Winslet's character and she reminds her husband of his previous dream of moving to Paris and after a short while he thinks its a great idea and they start to plan it. Except he's suddenly been offered a promotion and she gets pregnant and he calls the whole thing off.

To me it was just another 'unhappy couple' film.  I prefer films without some sort of moral, but on the other hand these films just feel somewhat pointless. I'm never quite sure whether to feel pity for the characters or nauseated by their whining.  It would be impossible to set the film in the present day, since the pressure on people staying together in a marriage, happy or otherwise, isn't the same, and in some ways this is one of the films greatest pitfalls.  A truly good film and story should be able to take place whether it is the present day or medieval times.
As a plus, the acting is very good and some of the dialogue can be quite engrossing.  The characters, for all their annoying traits, are somewhat believable, and there is a certain irony in the only person who actually makes sense being someone who is considered mentally ill.
There are a few unanswered questions in terms of DiCaprio's relationship with the father he talks about, along with how they got to first meeting to the situation they are now in.  There is never any evidence that there wasn't any alternative to it, but if life teaches you anything there are always alternatives.  The ending also is somewhat predictable and depressing, and really makes you wonder what the film was trying to say, if anything at all.
My rating is (raised mainly for the quality acting) is six and a half out of ten.

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