The Kids Are All Right is…all right

Published June 12, 2011 by jrm17

The Kids Are All Right movie poster courtesy of

Normally, I spend my Sunday mornings noshing on cereal and watching whatever’s been recorded on my DVR for the week.  Well, Harper’s Island is all caught up on and all my other shows are in reruns until the new seasons start so I thought I’d catch up on my movies.  I took this morning to watch The Kids Are All Right.  I was supposed to see it last summer before I took my Screen Craft class but Inception seemed like the better one to see.  And you know what–I was totally right.

Don’t get the wrong idea though: I really wanted to like this movie because my favorite Communications Arts professor liked it and talked about it a lot in Screen Craft (my all time favorite CMA class).  But despite my best efforts, I couldn’t do it.  I actually couldn’t even finish it (I got like 10 minutes from the end and gave up).  I’ll even go as far as saying I’m not quite sure why it was nominated for the Academy Award this year–albeit I’m obsessed with Black Swan and Inception.

For those of you who haven’t seen it or don’t know what it’s about, the plot revolves around five characters: the kids, Joni (Mia Wasikowska) and Laser (Josh Hutcherson); the lesbian couple, Nic (Annette Bening) and Jules (Julianne Moore); and the sperm donor, Paul (Mark Ruffalo).  Joni has just graduated high school and being 18, Laser gets her to contact the sperm donor that is their father.  A bond forms between Laser, Joni, Paul and Jules and, as my professor likes to say, chaos ensues.

To me, there was no possibility for the suspension of disbelief because the plot was predictable.  There were no great unexpected twists and no amazing camera shots (Cinematography is one of my greatest film loves).  I guess the message of the movie is to be true to yourself or something along those lines but it didn’t hold my attention for many long periods of time–I spent the first part painting my nails, then I repainted them, texted my best friend, and finished it off by eating an orange in hopes that the Vitamin C will kick this cold’s ass.

The one part of this movie that I totally connected to is the hippie-ness of Jules and Paul.  Their carefree, happiness-is-the-key-to-life, be-organic-and-local attitude is something we share and, needless to say (SPOILER ALERT), I completely get why Jules cheated on Nic with Paul…even though she’s a lesbian.

As for the actors, I knew who Julianne Moore was going into it but I had never actually watched anything she was in.  The only one I’d actually seen work by was Mark Ruffalo (and that was only thanks to my aforementioned love of Leonardo DiCaprio–Shutter Island is my fave–and Reese Witherspoon).  I feel like he is typecast as the slacker-esque, scruffy but cute guy a lot–with the exception of Shutter Island.  However, I do think he is a good actor.  In fact, none of the acting in The Kids Are All Right was bad…there was just nothing completely out of the ordinary and outstanding either.

Honestly, I will probably never watch this movie again by choice but if made to watch it, I won’t contemplate suicide because of it.  I’ll stick to Black Swan and Inception and any other crappy horror movie that I think is good instead of watching this one if given the option though.  Like I said, it was right in the title, the movie was all right.


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