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Mike Wilder brings you movie reviews. Each week a Selection of reviews for new releases and older films plus movie comparisons.

Thursday, 15 March 2012

Review of The Descendants (2011) by Mike

Title: The Descendants (2011)

Original UK Release Date: 27th January 2012

Original US Release Date: 9th December 2011

UK Rating: 15

US Rating: R

Director: Alexander Payne

Genre: Drama

Plot: A land owner has to take care of his two daughters after his wife is in a boating accident.

Mike's Review

I wanted to see this mainly to see if George Clooney was truly deserving of the best actor nomination. I’m a fan of his but he usually always plays the same kind of characters, a flawed and/or ruthless person who has an experience and realises the error of his ways. And this is no different.

George Clooney plays Matt King who along with his family owns a large piece of land on a Hawaiian island. His wife is in a boating accident and is left in a coma. Matt has to put his professional life on hold to take care of his two daughters. He also discovers his wife was seeing another man and wanted to leave him.

This is a good film with every cast member, Shailene Woodley, Amara Miller, Beau Bridges, Matthew Lillard and Judy Greer, doing an excellent job. But it is the performance of Nick Krause as Sid who steals the scene every time he speaks. He adds a needed element of comedy in an otherwise serious film.

So does George Clooney’s performance deserve the Oscar nomination and the Golden Globe win? Having not yet watched all the nominated films I can’t say. But he is great in this film. He is better than usual showing more emotion and vulnerability than he normally does. But it is the cast as a whole that makes this film work so well. Even though he is in pretty much every scene and it is his story, the cast brings this film to life and helps give his character added dimension.

The film itself is one of those that doesn’t really go anywhere. It tells the story that takes place over a few days well. There is no need for character development and no one really learns a life lesson. But the story is good and the characters realistic and interesting.

This is a good film and I enjoyed watching it. It’s a good movie for a quiet afternoon.

8 out of 10

Additional Information

Stand out performance: Nick Krause as Sid


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