Wednesday, 2 March 2011

Rabbit Hole

If there's one death-of-a-child film you should see this year then look no further. This one really is misery porn. There's not much you can do to make this kind of tale positive or life-affirming but writer David Lindsay-Abaire (adapting from his play of the same name) takes a pretty good stab at it. And his script, quite boldly, doesn't shy away from humour. Becca (Nicole Kidman) and Howie (Aaron Eckhart) are the deceased couple, coping differently with the loss of their little boy. She befriends the teenage driver of the car that killed him. Howie, on the other hand, gets a bit too close to the also deceased Gaby (Sandra Oh).

Kidman gives good misery but there's something about her that's a bit fake for someone in suburbia. Perhaps it’s the Hollywood baggage. Perhaps it’s the bleaching and botox. It’s just hard at times to buy her otherworldliness as normal. The same could be said of Aaron Eckhart. At one point he takes off his shirt to reveal a very un-normal, Hollywood-ised physique. Well, they’ve each appeared in at least one Batman film. That’s not going to encourage the pursuit of normality.

Dianne Wiest lends solid support as Becca’s mother. Newcomer, Miles Teller holds his own as the startled young adult forced to grow up so suddenly. His naturalistic performance is quite heart-breaking. The direction is simple but effective from John Cameron-Mitchell (known for slightly more “out there” fare such as Hedwig and the Angry Inch) - an inspired choice from producer Kidman, for this her pet project.

While the film has no simple solutions to the horrors, it does offer a certain poetic simplicity: that things will never be the same but life must go on.


  1. Nice review Monsieur. Don't think I will ever see this film though despite a lot of positive reviews, just not a topic I want to challenge myself with

    Having just scanned the poster, strangely I can't believe that this film has a tagline. But the more you think about it the weirder taglines become. 'The Only way out is through' seems like a hamfisted way of correlating the title with the plot, some pseudo-self help phrase and in my mind cheapens what the film sets out to achieve, an adult examination of the grieving process.

    Anyway where's the Piranha 3D review? Give the public what it wants.

  2. Look no further than...

  3. Seamless promotional work.....

    .....But I have severe hearing loss due to a Christmas Eve tumble I took back in the eighties.

  4. It's your own fault. You shouldn't get so attached to things. They're only detonators.

  5. There was a distinct lack of rabbits in this film. Although lots of holes.

  6. A holes! (I have no idea why I just wrote that).

  7. .....because Nicole Kidman's elixir is African orphan bums?