Movie Details

The Kids Are All Right

"The Kids Are Alright" focuses on a lesbian couple, Jules (Julianne Moore) and Nic (Annette Bening), who each gave birth to a child using the same anonymous sperm donor. When the older child, Joni (Mia Wasikowska), turns eighteen, her brother Laser (Josh Hutcherson), asks her to contact the sperm bank in order to meet their biological father, Paul (Mark Ruffalo). Once Paul is found, the household will never be the same, as family ties are defined and constantly re-defined, and then re-re-defined again.

Language: English
Subtitle: NA
Classification: R21
Release Date: 24 Feb 2011
Genre: Comedy
Running Time: 1 Hour 46 Minutes
Distributor: Cathay-Keris Films, FESTIVE FILMS
Cast: Julianne Moore, Mark Ruffalo, Mia Wasikowska, Josh Hutcherson, Yaya Dacosta, Annette Bening
Director: Lisa Cholodenko
Format: 2D

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Review
Writer: Syahida Kamarudin

Writer Ratings:
Overall:
Cast:
Plot:
Effects: NA
Cinematography:

Watch this if you liked: “Juno”, “Little Miss Sunshine”, “A Single Man”

No matter if the synopsis reads that the movie focuses on a lesbian couple - throw the dysfunction aside and it is just a take on family values, and preaches the same thing about marriage, raising children and all the brouhaha. Somehow, the homosexuality label that were put there is just a smoke and mirror to make it sound less Hallmark-drama and more indie-movie material.

Truth be told, the same essence and subject matter that are covered in "The Kids Are All Right" are no different than any other TVB dramas or your basic Spanish telenovelas. A single man (or sperm donor, whichever characteristic that you find more interesting and colourful) who wants his own family, a wife (or a partner) that feels underappreciated and looks for someone that does, the husband (or the more dominant partner) feels betrayed and the children suffer. What else is new?

It is hard to say which actress plays her role more perfectly. Critics would set their eyes on Julianne Moore, with her bohemian style and her letting go all the need to shave, Moore simply steals the show from Benning, although they both look authentic enough as a couple. Mark Ruffalo doesn't seem like a 50 year old, although he really is THAT close to the age and Mia Wasikowska, fresh from "Alice in Wonderland", can't seem to play other types of characters than an uptight monotonous teenager that one might question if she is actually as uptight in real life. However the slight tremble of her lips at the last scene might suggest otherwise and it confuses you if the girl is wooden or actually very talented.

However, the movie does have its warmth and light-hearted moments and the dialogues are sincere and truthful. It tries to rationalise that no matter how unconventional a family is, it still face the same problems that any conservative family have. The real problem is that it is just too formulaic and other than the witty lines and the very real portrayal from its ensemble, the topic brings nothing new to the table except seeing a hairy Julianne Moore.

Cinema Online, 08 February 2011
   
Showtimes
 
Classification
Effective 15 July 2011
G - Suitable for all ages
PG - Suitable for all ages, but parents should provide guidance to their young
PG13 - Suitable for persons aged 13 and above, but parental guidance is advised for children below 13
NC16 - Suitable for persons aged 16 years and above
M18 - Suitable for persons aged 18 years and above
R21 - Restricted to persons aged 21 and above only
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