The Descendants is a sometimes humorous, sometimes tragic journey for Matt King, an indifferent husband and father of two girls, who is forced to re-examine his past and embrace his future when his wife suffers a boating accident. The event leads to a rapprochement with his young daughters while Matt Wrestles with a decision ...more
The Descendants is a sometimes humorous, sometimes tragic journey for Matt King, an indifferent husband and father of two girls, who is forced to re-examine his past and embrace his future when his wife suffers a boating accident. The event leads to a rapprochement with his young daughters while Matt Wrestles with a decision to sell the family's land handed down from the Hawaiian royalty and the missionaries. less
“The Descendants is a well enacted and a finely built emotional drama that easily manages to connect with the audience. George Clooney’s performance in the film is truly commendable. Go for it!”
The Descendants releases in India amongst much Oscar buzz and two major Golden Globes wins for Best Drama and Best Actor. However it fails to make an indelible mark like last year's favorites Black Swan and The King. Still it a good watch and doesn't disappoint.
Alexander Payne dons the director's hat seven years after his hugely acclaimed film Sideways. The Descendants displays most of the charm and amicability of it's predecessor but the film never really moves out of the boundaries that the director sets with the premise. You predict the characters' development and their catharses as you wait for the inevitable much like Clooney's coma ridden wife waiting for her death. Yet a clever screenplay and some never before seen shots of Hawaii make it an interesting journey.
Clooney gives a measured and emotionally raw performance. You feel for his tortured soul as his sorrowful eyes and tanned wrinkles tell the story of his pain; hell even just the back of his head sitting quietly tugs at you as the Hawaiian ukulele gently plays in the background. The supporting cast is fresh and Clooney's two young daughters bring in much of the conflict in his life as they bring life to the film.
The last 20 minutes of the film feel stretched especially when everything is a foregone conclusion and you are just waiting for the fat lady to sing. As the film ends you see Clooney with his two daughters sedately sitting in front of the telly eating ice cream. The entire film flashes before your eyes as a metaphor; mellow waves of the ocean crashing onto a calm shore.
The film definitely is a rich and nuanced work but given the hoopla around it, you keep wondering if you are the idiot who doesn't get it. Still worth a watch and one of the better English flicks to release in a while. Go for it, you will enjoy the experience. 3 stars.