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Stills from Reservation Road (click for larger image).
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Top Customer Reviews
Ethan and Grace Learner (Joaquin Phoenix and Jennifer Connelly) and their children Josh (Sean Curley) and Emma (Elle Fanning) are the 'perfect family', living comfortably in Connecticut, until one night after a picnic where Josh captured fireflies for his sister, the family stops at a roadside station and while Josh releases the fireflies at his mother's request he is hit by a car and killed. The driver of the car is Dwight Arno (Mark Ruffalo) who is trying to return his son Lucas (Eddie Alderson) to his estranged, remarried wife Ruth (Mira Sorvino) after a baseball game that ran too long. Instead of stopping when he hits the child, Dwight drives on, not wanting to upset his son. Within the tragedy of the next week the Learners are devastated and feel the police are not finding the perpetrator. They decide to engage a lawyer to assist the investigation and the lawyer they engage is Dwight, a man so torn by the sadness of his life that he is barely functioning - trying to find some solace in restoring a solid relationship with his son while dealing with the fact that he has killed another family's son.Read more ›
The movie has so many strong points and it deals with one of the most painful losses a parent can endure - and in such a terribly tragic and sudden way, no warning at all.
MAJOR SPOILER ALERT: When the Lerner family is driving home one night, they make a stop at a gas station. That is when their son gets out of the car to let some lightening bugs out of a jar, a car comes along, hits him and kills him - and two families' lives are forever changed. Joaquin Phoenix does a fine job as Ethan, the father of the dead boy. His anger is palpable. Also, if you see the DVD make sure you listen to his description of how hard it was for him to channel that anger. He actually had to talk to victims to get a sense of how they felt after losing a child.
It is hard not to feel sorry for both fathers - the one whose son was killed and the one who accidentally was the killer. Dwight Arno is the man who happened to drive into the boy and his pervading sadness is crafted superbly by Mark Ruffalo, an actor who always seems on the edge of sadness to me.
These men have wives, of course, and I don't mean to slight them - or the actresses behind their depiction. Jennifer Connelly is Grace, wife to Ethan and mother of the dead child. Mira Sorvino is equally strong as Dwight's wife, although they are divorced, but share custody of a son.
Having noted the solid acting in this movie, I do have to add that the plot did disappoint, having such high expectations after having read the book.Read more ›
A fateful night, an unpleasant and disgraced incident will join the lives of two well different families, and so the anger, despair and pain will involve the heart and minds of these uncomfortable parents. In this order of ideas, and after having lost the patience and faith in the judicial system the next step of this troubled father will be to go for legal advise, and so the destiny will gather the prey and hunter face to face.
All the cast was terrific but Jennifer Connelly steals the show . her forceful and demanding performance overpasses the well known limits of the used to become a true reference pattern.
Watch her for instance, at the moment her husband refers her about the incident of the fireflies and observe carefully the dramatic progression of her facial aspects; or the brief but intense dialogue with him at the moment she wants to give all the things of her beloved son.
So, you will have not only a vibrant and riveting thriller, but a first -class performance and a careful camera work all the way through, that will involve you from start to finish.
"Reservation Road", directed by Terry George ("Hotel Rawnda") and based on the novel by John Burnham Schwartz is a very faithful recreation of the book.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Had not heard of this movie before. Very emotional about a somber and tragic topic. Am not sure how a parent who has lost a child to a violent death would be able to take this... Read morePublished 5 months ago by Paul A. DeLong
Brilliant acting in a heartbreaking story. Well worth the time and energy.Published 7 months ago by Pamela E Bradley
Love this movie, a real tear jerker. I bought it for my DVD collection.Published 8 months ago by Desert rat
What makes this film worth watching are the stellar performances of Joaquin Phoenix, Mark Ruffalo and Jennifer Connely.Published 12 months ago by Paco
Released in 2007, “Reservation Road” is a sad drama starring Mark Ruffalo as a divorced father in coastal Connecticut who commits a hit and run while in a hurry. Read morePublished 14 months ago by Wuchak
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