(spoiler warning! i have divulged some details, though this is not a suspense so it wont really spoil your fun :))
I walked out of the hall smiling and content. Wonderful way to wrap up the weekend. The Descendants is such a “human” movie. Watched it with my Dad and we both totally enjoyed it. I can’t / wont call this a movie review – but here is what made me like it so much.
The location – Hawaii. The breezy, overcast, deep greens and crystal blues – gave the movie a refreshing and calming feel. I especially liked how Matt (G.Clooney) introduces us to his story – about how it irritated him that people always considered him so lucky to be living in Hawaii and how his life must be like being on a permanent holiday – but in reality how f***** up it actually was – and so Hawaii is as real as any place.
I’ve noticed that the narrative is a typical introduction to a lot of Hollywood movies, but this one is really well written in and I enjoyed it so much.
George Clooney takes the cake for sure. I haven’t seen him play such a vulnerable role in any of his past films where usually he is the smart, witty, on top of his game kinda guy. In The Descendants he plays a workaholic who suddenly finds himself as a single father to his two daughters, a ten year old and a 17 year old rebellious teenager – both of which are testing him in every way possible. Adding to that a comatose, dying wife who he discovers was cheating on him and a big land sale deal of ancestral property that his extended family is pressing him to sell, and you can understand what he means when he says he is barely keeping his head above water. He plays the role so heart-warmingly well and one just wants to give him a hug and tell him to hang in there.
The two girls playing his daughters are also very good, especially the 10 year old Scotty. The character Sid does very well in playing a helplessly stupid jock. He looks like he is misplaced and unnecessary but he carries his part very well adding the subtle funnies.
Its amazing how the director, Alexander Payne has managed to make all his actors underplay and yet keep the feel of the film so wonderfully natural and so real. There is humour in unlikely instances in the film and appropriately so 🙂 lightens the mood without trivializing the moment. So even though there is tragedy in the film which is central to the story, it doesn’t bog you down and become a tear jerker – coz sometimes you just dont feel like crying your eyes out and yet want to associate with what the characters feel.
The music / background score is brilliant. Soothing and calming are two words that come to me – the kind of stuff you want to play in the room while you do other things 🙂
Finally, without making this any more longer than it should be – to me the story was about accepting, dealing, forgiving and moving on. But also that its easier said than done. Congratulations to George Clooney and Alexander Payne – well deserved on all the praise, awards and accolades they have received and will receive 🙂
Extra enjoyment points for the 5 movie trailers they screened during the intermission and before the movie began, always makes the movie experience doubly enriching. The Titans and Ghostrider 2 with over the top special effects – impressive, though not sure if the 2 minute trailer will have the same effect in a 2 hour movie. Lets see if i ever get to those in a theatre 🙂
Do rate the post, helps me know if I should write the next one 😉