This past week I watched the movie Revelutionary Road, Starring Leonardo DiCaprio and Kate Winslet. As a fan of Titanic, I was excited to see them paired once again. The chemistry between them in the epic romance, is incredible and what a director dreams of. Not knowing anything about the movie, I popped the DVD in on a relaxing afternoon. A story about a young couple living in a Connecticut suburb during the mid-1950s struggle to come to terms with their personal problems while trying to raise their two children. Based on a novel by Richard Yates. Similar to some movies made today, Revolutionary Road, has incredible visuals, composition of shots that are outstanding, a modern day Hollywood movie, that looks Hollywood. But, it’s one flaw, the story. In my opinion, people are living such hard lives that when they sit down and watch a movie, they want to escape to a fictional place where the lives of the characters are better than their own. In this movie, you identify with Kate Winslet’s character, April, the wife, because just as she wants to escape from her life as a house wife, and seek adventure in Paris, you want to escape this melodramatic, drawn out, depressing, film. In recently seeing Shutter Island and Inception I was hoping for a lighter, hopeful toned movie. But, unfortunately this movie had more depressing elements than both others combined.
In Shutter Island there is a depressing tone mixed with eerie, mystery, dread, sadness, conspiracy, violence, and adventure which gives the audience adrenaline rush to keep them interested.
In Inception you experience adventure, fantasy, sadness, action, and a cool new concept not seen on the silver screen before. However, Revolutionary Road leaves you feeling empty, making you feel uncomfortable, want to slap Leonardo for being so mean, rude, cold to his wife, no matter justified or provoked he is. But after seeing all these movies, I was more than a little disturbed when I thought about how similar the roles are. In each film, Leonardo plays a married man whose wife is either mentally ill and or suicidal, and in all films she ends up dead at the end of the film. (I am sorry if this spoils the ending of any of them!)
Also, in both Inception and Shutter Island the end is one you don’t see very often, it is open ended. Open for the audience to interrupt what really happened, or what comes next. Only in Revolutionary Road is Leonardo’s fate displayed concrete.
Out of the three, Revolutionary Road is the only one I would not recommend and would not willingly watch it again. This is a rating I do not hand out easily, and is only earned appropriately.