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American Independents, Films by women

The Kids Are All Right (US 2010)

Lisa Cholodenko with Mia Wasikowska as Joni and Julianne Moore as Jules

This is a thoroughly entertaining romantic comedy/drama with excellent performances and witty dialogue. What’s interesting, I guess, is that it is classified as an independent movie because a) it is about a lesbian couple and their family, b) it is actually co-written and directed by a lesbian director and c) it’s a low-budget film. Watching it in a sparsely-populated multiplex screen at an early evening show on a Tuesday I was struck by how the projectionist seemed to have turned down the volume so that I could hardly hear it when usually in the same multiplex I am deafened. I noticed this because the opening of the movie is relatively quiet in action terms. My feeling is that this is the kind of movie that could have been made in the era of classical Hollywood – if you took away the restraints of the Hays Code.

I did see Lisa Cholodenko’s first feature High Art (Canada/US 1998) but I confess that I don’t remember it well – though I do remember that I enjoyed it. Possibly, I would have enjoyed this latest film even more if there had been more drama. A bit more restraint on behalf of the central characters might have been interesting, but then the joke of the film seems to be, pace the title, that the adults are all over the place emotionally and the kids are quite cool.

The best jokes for me were the ones about organic gardening and I’d like to come out as a straight guy who loves Joni Mitchell and especially ‘Blue’.

So, kudos to everyone involved and thanks for a great night out. But I fear that this crowd pleasing will push out Winter’s Bone from the awards ceremony and that would certainly be a shame.

Discussion

One thought on “The Kids Are All Right (US 2010)

  1. I thought this was a great flick, and as you kind of said a very non-indie indie, but seriously hope that Winter’s Bone won’t lose votes, i thought that was way better, one of the best films of the year.

    Posted by 5plitreel | November 4, 2010, 19:52

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