Wednesday, 25 January 2012

The Descendants - Movie Review


Who's in it? 

George Clooney, Shailene Woodley and Amara Miller

What's it About? 

The Descendants is the story of Matt King (Clooney) as a descendant of old Hawaiian royalty and the trustee of the estate on the island of Kauai, ‘25 acres of paradise’ that is set to make his family up to half a billion dollars. It's a touching tale of a man having to deal with his family for the first time in a long time and struggling with a life changing decision, once he has all the facts.

Any Good? 

Oscar winning movie maker Alexander Payne is back and 8 years after taking Hollywood by storm he couldn't have chosen a better film for his return.

The movie opens with Clooney’s narrative, shots of ‘the real’ Hawaii and the revelation that his wife is on life support following a speed boat accident.

I’m going to try not to hype this one but from the opening scenes I was hooked and reeled in. Clooney plays not only a husband and father suffering a potentially devastating loss and a shattered heart; he’s also a real person. A likeable, relatable, real person that you can’t help but care for.


Look at ALL that scenery...



Fans of Garden State will recognise the beautifully done, up close scrutiny of the family unit, its intricacies and the fact that reality is very rarely like the movies. Both Clooney and his on screen daughter (Woodley) play the relationship with ease. She’s definitely one to watch. There’s not one character I could fault or expect more from.

Payne has said that this movie is certainly no tourist postcard of Hawaii but I beg to differ. It’s a dark portrayal, certainly, but there’s also unmistakeable and breathtaking beauty. Even in the rain, Hawaii is somewhere I’d like to be. (I’m blaming 50 First Dates, the finale of Modern Family & IZ Kamakawiwo`ole for that too). You can almost feel the breeze in your hair and you can’t help but empathise with Clooney in his struggle over whether to sell out or not.


Daddy & Daughter. A director's dream, no doubt. 

With one of the most beautiful and fitting scores I’ve heard for quite a while and the ability to make you laugh and cry effortlessly I’m recommending you go see The Descendents. Having already won the Golden Globe for Best Drama and Best Actor, if Clooney doesn’t get his statuette for this I’m finished with the Oscars (and I mean it this time). Mahalo.


Rating:



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