When writer/director Sean Durkin first made waves with his groundbreaking feature debut Martha Marcy May Marlene In 2011, it looked like he would soon have several other projects in the works. Took longer than we’d like, but Durkin is finally back as writer/director home, a slow 80s drama starring Jude Law and Carrie Coon, is now available on Showtime after debuting in theaters in late 2020. We’re here to tell you if Durkin’s second film is worth the wait, or if you should pass up on this one.
homeStream it or skip it?
abstract: Rory (Jude Law) and Allison (Carrie Coon) have a good life. Or at least it seems so. It’s the 1980s, and they live in a cozy New York home with their kids, teens Samantha (Oona Roche) and Benjamin (Charlie Shotwell). Sam is a gymnast, Ben loves soccer, and Allison spends her days working at the stables and giving horse riding lessons. Things aren’t particularly fancy or extravagant, but they look good – at least to everyone but Rory, who calls an old business associate in London and makes his way to a job there without consulting his family first. makes. He shares the news with Alison about bringing her coffee to bed during a morning ritual, and he is less than thrilled about the move, assuming it will be their permanent home (it will be ten years). in his fourth move). However, they go on with it, and the four soon find themselves in a large old house in the English countryside.
Once settled to some extent, it does not take long for the pre-existing issues in their marriage to come to a head. Rory continues to chatter his way through almost every conversation—both at work and at home, throwing away money he doesn’t have as much he needed to search for a better life as a kid. Money is hardly one of the worst issues between Rory and Allison, but it certainly doesn’t help things, and neither does the creepy house that makes it worse. home Marriage raises questions about family and identity, and there are no easy answers.
Which movies will this remind you of?: This heavy relationship-in-crisis film exposes flicks like revolutionary Road, deep Blue Sea, and also blue Valentine, but actually feels spiritually similar to the rich, marriage-focused melodrama of the ’60s.
Worth watching: Coon and Law are truly at their best here — and Charlie Shotwell as young Benjamin is exceptional — but Oona Roche’s performance as teenage daughter Samantha is a standout. She’s more than just an angry stepdaughter, she’s a young adult who is more perceptive to the tension and reality of their situation than anyone gives her credit. The camera eats her up, especially during her silent reactions to Rory and Allison’s fights and her mother’s conversation. It may be a quiet performance, but it is mesmerizing. with a juicy role the morning show With his belt already under, Roche is only getting started.
Memorable dialogue: There have been a lot of amazing exchanges during this homeHours and 45 minutes later in the film, including a particularly on-the-nose (but oddly perfect?) conversation between Rory and a cabbie. There was a tension between Allison and Samantha, which I totally fell in love with, though, mainly because it involved Ginger: “I don’t have to make choices, Mom. I just have one for me to make my own choices.” The man will be found.”
sex and skin Rory and Allison get hot and heavy with some sneaky sex early in the movie, but that’s only when there’s any real heat between them. Allison calls off her next attempt at sexy time, and sex seems to be the furthest thing on her mind for the rest. home.
Our take: it’s so rare that a play like home Doesn’t try to tie you in with some twist or something special; I initially waited for it to turn into some kind of haunted house thriller, but instead, it takes a simpler — and more difficult — route. And it’s infinitely better and more interesting this way. Panic is coming from inside the house people at home, and the stakes seem so high that they will feel otherwise because of it. I found myself mesmerized by every patient scene, every dull moment. home Watches in less than two hours, but it seems long – and I mean that as a compliment. The passage of time and events is strange and mesmerizing, subtly devastating and utterly believable in its effects. Sean Durkin has created something deep and eccentric, evoking the drama of days past and telling a story in its own right in the process. Each character—even the children, who could easily fall into stereotyped territory—feel utterly, utterly affected by the actions of each member of this family. It’s a story about the gradual destruction of a marriage, yes, but it’s also about the very real wreckage they leave in their wake. Every scene here has a ripple effect, every word has an emotional toll.
each scene of the scene home Feels meaningful even when very few words are spoken; This tense, rich drama is the stuff of decades-old movies. There’s a pivotal fight scene between Rory and Allison that feels like a trip to the theater, but I mean that in the best way; Instead of cutting between close-ups or dramatic angles, the camera lets the actors do all the work. they get into each other’s faces, they completely reaction, they breathe and think and feel. It’s unlike anything I’ve seen in recent memory, and it reflects the filmmaker’s deep trust in the cast. it’s really heart home, a film that doesn’t feel the need to dazzle or perform. At times, it seems as though a series of increasingly tense vignettes, portraits of a family in distress, along the way lead to a series of small explosions on a nuclear scale. Every development feels perfectly earned, and the final scene—not particularly loud or crazy, but perhaps my favorite in the film—has a quiet conclusion, though not necessarily a resolution, a quietly surprising finale few filmmakers ever attempt. do (and those that are rarely right).
The Oscars will certainly be disappointing this year, but I’d be extremely surprised if Carrie Coon isn’t at the center of the Best Actress conversation. Very few artists are ever approached to do what Coon does here; none of it seems Display, and that’s what’s so breathtaking about it. Every nervous cigarette, every fluttering strand of blonde hair, every gaze—it all seems to be part of a real person, a living, breathing woman who might be sitting across the table from you. The roller coaster of his emotions reaches you and leaves you stunned. It’s a timeless performance, not one of a heroine or a femme fatale or any other trope—one of a human. And unlike Law, who is at the best of his career here, it is absolutely unstoppable. Their twisted match is made in the movie Heaven, which creates something relentlessly charming; You don’t necessarily root for any of them, but you can’t look away either. and that goes for the whole home; A film that only . have material for Happen, one that grabs you in a way you can hardly notice – and one that won’t let go for a while.
Our Call: Stream IT. home There’s a rich, layered drama, the kind of cool movie that misses so much these days. Thanks to a career-best performance from Law & Coon and Sean Durkin’s outstanding directorial debut, home Really something special.
Jade Budowski is a freelance writer with a knack for ruining punchlines and harboring dad-age celebrity crushes. Follow him on Twitter: @jadebudowski.
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