Sunday, 26 December 2010

The Kids Are All Right: Movie Review

The Kids Are All Right: Movie Review

The Kids Are All Right
Rating: 8/10
Cast: Annette Bening, Julianne Moore, Mark Ruffalo, Mia Wasikowska
Director: Lisa Cholodenko
Beloved of the festival scene, The Kids Are All Right finally arrives in New Zealand cinemas.
It's the tale of a pair of siblings Joni and Laser (Mia Wasikowska and Josh Hutcherson) who, despite living with their two moms Nic and Jules (Bening and Moore), decide they want to know who their father is.
On Joni's 18th birthday, Laser persuades her to contact the sperm bank to find their dad - and that's how they end up meeting the laid back and non committal Paul (a superb turn by Mark Ruffalo).
However, the uptight Nic's none too impressed with Paul and despite attempts to get to know him, she appears threatened by the whole situation. Matters - and tensions - get worse when Jules starts spending time with Paul...
The Kids Are All Right is going to be one of those films which is acclaimed by some but others may be at a loss to see what its appeal is.
But it's great performances from all involved which mean it's to be enjoyed in the cinema - there's a very real tenderness between Nic and Jules (despite their fighting and snippiness) and it's well portrayed by a spiky Annette Bening and a passive Julianne Moore.
However, it's Mark Ruffalo who truly impresses in this - as he negotiates the wedge driven between the two moms with a carefree attitude and an inappropriate smirk here and there. It's really one of the best performances I've seen from him - and yet another reason why he's one of Hollywood's most underappreciated talents.

The Kids Are All Right is quirky, a bit indie and very funny in places - director Cholodenko never sends the screen play into melodrama and keeps it all on the level.

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