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Revolutionary Road

3.7 out of 5 stars 392 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

Frank and April, a married couple in the 1950s, have always seen themselves as special, different, ready and willing to live their lives based on higher ideals. So, as soon as they move into their new house on Revolutionary Road, they proudly declare their independence from the suburban inertia that surrounds them and determine never to be trapped by the social confines of their era. Yet for all their charm, beauty and irreverence, the Wheelers find themselves becoming exactly what they didn't expect: a good man with a routine job whose nerve has gone missing; a less-than-happy homemaker starving for fulfillment and passion; an American family with lost dreams, like any other. Driven to change their fates, April hatches an audacious plan to start all over again, to leave the comforts of Connecticut behind for the great unknown of Paris. But when the plan is put in motion, each spouse is pushed to extremes - one to escape whatever the cost, the other to save all that they have, no matter the compromises.

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In Revolutionary Road, Kate Winslet and Leonardo DiCaprio reunite for the first time since their careers exploded with Titanic--and it's almost as if they're playing the same characters, only married and faced with the hollowness of a 1950s suburban existence. Frank and April Wheeler (DiCaprio and Winslet) always thought of themselves as special, but they settled in a conventional Connecticut suburb when they had children. Hungry for a less constricted life, April persuades Frank to move to Paris--but slowly their plans unravel and their marriage unravels along with it. While Revolutionary Road may be a bit too glib about suburban emptiness--the lives Frank and April lead don't seem so stifled--the portrait of a mismatched marriage is vivid and devastating. The ways that Frank and April misinterpret each other, and the subtle yet unbearable dissatisfaction they feel, is rendered with remarkable and unsettling acuteness. Winslet and DiCaprio's natural chemistry tells us what drew these two together, making the way they tear each other apart all the more shocking. The excellent supporting cast includes Kathy Bates (Misery), Dylan Baker (Happiness), and especially Michael Shannon (Bug) as a mentally troubled mathematician who cuts to the quick of the Wheelers' troubles. Mention must be made of the beautiful production design; the costumes and sets are simply gorgeous. --Bret Fetzer




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Product Details

  • Actors: Leonardo DiCaprio, Kate Winslet
  • Format: Multiple Formats, AC-3, Color, Dolby, Dubbed, NTSC, Subtitled, Widescreen
  • Language: English
  • Subtitles: English, Spanish, French
  • Dubbed: French, Spanish
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 2.35:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated:
    R
    Restricted
  • Studio: Paramount
  • DVD Release Date: June 2, 2009
  • Run Time: 119 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 3.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (392 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B0016Q2D66
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #23,803 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Revolutionary Road" on IMDb

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Alfred Johnson on November 10, 2009
Format: DVD
Over the past period I have seemingly endlessly retailed the experiences of my young adulthood during the 1960s, the time of the "generation of `68". That makes me, obviously, a child of the 1950s, the time period of this very interesting movie, "Revolutionary Road" based on a book by the darkly sardonic writer, Richard Yates. I have also seemingly endlessly pointed out my experiences and the effects they had as a result of growing up among the marginally working poor in that `golden age'. I am fond of saying that I didn't know there was any other condition than being poor for a long time. Well, I did find out there was and although in my youth I would still have had a hard time relating to the story line of this film. The `trials and tribulations', then, of an upwardly mobile, prosperous young couple, the Wheelers, Frank and April, with the mandatory two charming children and a nice leafy suburban house in some nice town in Connecticut would have gone over my head. Now though I can a little more readily appreciate the seamy psychologically paralyzing side of that existence.

As graphically portrayed in the film that seamy side (that also provided some of the most powerful scenes in the movie, and best acting moments by both Winslett and DiCaprio), the central driving force of the story), is the emptiness of middle class existence in the 1950s. Cookie-cutter is the word that came to mind as Frank and April try to break the golden bonds that keep them tied to their old life. One of the nice moments cinematically is the sequence involving Frank's routine workday morning ritual catching the train to New York City (along with all the other felt-hatted men, the symbol of success in that period).
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Format: DVD
Adapted from Richard Yates first novel, Revolutionary Road exposes the adversities of a young couple living in a Connecticut suburban neighborhood during the 1950's who simply realize too late that they were never meant to be.

Frank Wheeler (Dicaprio) and April Wheeler (Winslet) feel as though they must standout from all the other mundane and ordinary suburbanites in their neighborhood. Frank, a marketer who works for Knoxx business (equivalent to IBM in those days) machines, is profoundly miserable at his job as he diligently works in a cubicle and engages in secretarial affairs with the novice typist. April, a struggling actress, who apparently never received her big break in show biz does not like to talk about her failures.

During the beginning of the film, we are introduced to a quick flashback of how they met at a party while they were younger; Frank exhibits his witty, charming charisma as he gives April the impression of eventually leading a spontaneous life in Paris in the future. However, the viewer only begins to find out that this was merely a sales pitch or a common characteristic of a marketer. On the contrary, April falls for it no less. Fast forwarding to the present, April now lives in an ordinary life on Revolutionary Road with Frank and her two children and receives frequent visits from her inquisitive real estate agent (Kathy Bates) accompanied with her "mentally unstable" son. April feels as though she is leading a very unsatisfying and unfulfilled life. To add some excitement in their relationship, April broaches Frank's former idea of actually pursuing a career and settling in Paris as a secretary because it simply pays handsomely; meanwhile, it will beneficially fit Frank because he can finally figure out what he wants to do with his life.
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Format: DVD Verified Purchase
Just before things take a turn for the worse, Frank Wheeler (Leonardo DiCaprio) is dictating a letter. A line about inventory control underscores the heart of where he and his wife April (Kate Winslet) find themselves: "Knowing what you've got, knowing what you need, knowing what you can do without..." Those answers seemed clear until Frank second-guessed himself, tempted by offers of prestige and money. If there is one lesson I have learned in life and that I will continuously remind my children of, it is that second guessing yourself, going against what your instincts tell you, is always the wrong thing to do. Revolutionary Road is a movie about a couple who face this crossroad in life and differ as to the right direction they should take. April listens to her instincts despite the dark uncertainty of her choice. Frank follows the well-lit and safe path.
Revolutionary Road is a movie that splits people on either side, with those who feel it is a study in whiny, selfish, and immature suburbanites wishing for a better life than they currently have. Then there are those like me who felt a deep connection to them, in particular April; the one of the pair that seems the most trapped in the suburban dream and the one whose escape is the most critical
Of the two, April is largely attacked in reviews and I can't figure that out. She is the one accused of screwing things up and being the most difficult and unrealistic. Yet, she is the one who comes up with the idea to move to Paris as a gift to her husband. She is the one who realizes that "living life as if it matters" is beyond any price tag. If any one is at fault in my interpretation, it is Frank, who takes the path of least resistance and condemns his wife to a world of "emptiness and hopelessness.
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