Revolutionary Road – Movie Review
Kate and Leo appear to be happy, but looks can be deceiving on “Revolutionary Road”…
The young married couple in “Revolutionary Road,” played by Leonardo DiCaprio and Kate Winslet plan to take a long boat ride to Paris; however unlike in the movie “Titanic,” this love boat is stuck on shore.
Author Richard Yates compelling character study takes place in mid-1950s suburbia when marriage was truly until death do us part. Frank (DiCaprio) works out of a cubicle, occasionally cheating on his wife with the doe-eyed secretary, in a mundane job.
April (Winslet) lives an equally lifeless but more so spiraling out of control existence as a failed actress who dreams of leaving the suburban life to start a new in Paris. With youthful aspirations rekindled, Frank is all for the move once he gets over the initial shock. Before long, he gets cold feet when he stumbles into a big fat promotion at work and April becomes pregnant. This doesn’t sit well with April who falls deeper into a depressive state as she realizes a life without truth is not what she bargained for when they moved to Revolutionary Road.
Directed by Sam Mendes (American Beauty) “Revolutionary Road,” reflects the dwindling dreams not only of suburban life but of all who have compromised their dreams for the responsibilities of adulthood. Leonardo DiCaprio is strong as the cheating husband whose life is a series of automated events; but it’s Kate Winslet who shines. She excellently defines the confused housewife who can’t stay in her miserable circumstance but can’t leave it either. We sympathize with her pain which is a hard thing to do since April will be considered the most selfish and unsympathetic character in the film. Winslet has accomplished this nearly impossible task twice this year bookmarked with her unethical turn in the film “The Reader.”
Kathy Bates and Michael Shannon are notable supporting characters. Bates as the meddling realtor who sold the Wheeler’s their home but secretly finds them flighty and Shannon as her mentally disturbed son who may just be the most honest character in the film. “Revolutionary Road” is not for everyone. This is a captivating film with well written characters however the constant arguing by the two leads may be a polarizing reality check for audiences looking for a second helping of DiCaprio and Winslet’s “Titanic” romantic drama. (3 Stars) – John Villoch