Revolutionary Road (2008)

Courtesy of IMDb

If you’re a hopeless romantic and hardcore fan of Titanic then I’m sure you’d be eager to see the great chemistry between Leonardo DiCaprio and Kate Winslet once more on screen. However if you think Revolutionary Road is anything like Titanic, you’re horribly mistaken. In fact, it’s the exact opposite. Although both films are incredibly heartbreaking, you’re probably not likely to want to watch Revolutionary Road again.

Revolutionary Road stars both Oscar-winning actors as suburban couple April (Winslet) and Frank Wheeler (DiCaprio) living a standard life in mid-1950s Connecticut. From the get-go we see disputes between the couple as April’s acting career goes down the drain. She becomes a housewife, looking after their two children while Frank works as a salesman for a company. Although once an ambitious and free couple, they have fallen victim to the boredom and “hopeless emptiness” of suburban life and make a spontaneous decision to uproot and move to Paris. Soon we start to see the desperation and urgency of April’s desire to leave. However Frank is not in so much a hurry as April, having just received a promotion at his company, and does not see any reason to abandon their life in the States and head to Europe. Tensions build as the couple drifts apart and the arguments between them are unbearable to watch. They become physically violent and April’s behaviour increasingly erratic. Even though both are main characters of the film, I believe that it intentionally portrays Frank to be the wronged one and April the irrational one. I start to empathise more with Frank; he appears to love his family enough to be able to work at a job he loathes every single day. He is the more level-headed of the two and thinks the decision to go to Paris is just too unrealistic.

It’s obvious to see why Winslet and DiCaprio are two of the world’s leading actors. Dedication to their craft just seeps through their performances. Perhaps they are so incredible in this film because of the long friendship between the two. To be able to play one of the most iconic couples in Titanic to one in which they cannot stand each other truly showcases their talent. Revolutionary Road is not a happy nor up-lifting film and I admit it’s one of the most depressing I have seen to date. Having said all that, it certainly does leave me feeling emotions, albeit sour ones, as strongly as Titanic did.

Rating: 2/5

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