Revolutionary Road (ExpDl Top 100)

“I have been so stoked to get this project started all week. I came close to getting a jump on it earlier, but figured it’d be best to try and work thru my unwatched queue while I still had the chance. Then I realized that this is mystery hunt weekend at MIT, but figured I wasnt quite in the mood for it this year. I’d rather watch some of my all time favorite movies.

I’ve reworked my top 100 several times over the past few years. What I’ve noticed about the 100 spot is that I kinda approach it as a last chance slot on the list. I generally look at what has been pushed down past that point and decide which one most deserves to be included, even if it means I’m technically ranking it higher than another favorite. Although I dont think that was so much the case this time around. Well I suppose it was to some extent. I’d see Revolutionary Road at number 100 and decide “”Yes, I really do want this included””.

This is one I’ve written up before, back on my old LJ . You can go there if you want the general recap and thoughts. Entries on this project are gonna be more on the personal and antecdotal (sp?) side than critical reviews.

So now, why do I feel that this is one of my all time favorites? I just find it brilliant on so many fronts. I love a good, dark story and Revolutionary Road is so \m/ fulfilling in that aspect. The IMDB summary (“”A young couple living in a Connecticut suburb during the mid-1950s struggle to come to terms with their personal problems while trying to raise their two children. Based on a novel by Richard Yates””) doesnt even begin to do it justice. Although I suppose there isnt really a way to quickly summarize and emphasize the intensity. I usually say that it follows a marriage that goes from bad to worse. I’ve seen it a few times and was still holding my breath thru the last fifteen minutes. The music throughout the whole thing is so hauntingly gorgeous. It only adds to the emotional whirlwind.

And of course, there’s the amazing amazing amazing cast. Let’s work our way up the list, shall we?
-Kathy Bates. I’ve adored her since Angus, and she adds such a classy charm to this film. She often reminds me of my mom, and here in particular its in her character’s need to keep up a socially acceptable appearance.
-Michael Shannon. Back when the Academy Award nominations for its year were announced, there was a lot of “”jigga wha?!”” when Shannon got the one acting nod for the film. But his character is so genius. I love that while he’s the certifiably crazy character, he truly is the voice of reason and the only one that is actually capable of thinking clearly. I just cant get past that irony. I would say that his two scenes are my favorites, but I think that the big April/Frank argument right after might win.
-Kate Winslet. Adore this woman. Although Im still somewhat miffed with how the Oscars played out. I really wanted her to get a Best Actress nomination for this film, and then Supporting for The Reader. Im thrilled she got her Oscar, but I’ll save the rest of that rant for another day. Her character, April, is incredibly complex, and the performance is so nuanced. It seems that the times when she’s got the most going on are the ones where she has to play more cool than ever. When she finally does get to let everything out, she’s just so commanding. I dont wanna spoil anything from the end, but she is the reason why I dropped everything and gave the film my total undivided for that last fifteen min.
-Leonardo Dicaprio. Love this boy so much. We’re actually gonna be seeing A LOT of him on this list. If my quick count just now was correct, he ties with Edward Norton for the most films on this list. Leo wins if you count The Departed which just missed the cut off on the list. I felt like he didnt get quite the love he deserved for this one. Granted, it was a tough year. Sean Penn and Mickey Rourke were the ones with all the glory at the big ceremonies. But this is one of his most firey and emotionally charged performances. I think if I keep going, Im just gonna rehash a lot of the same adjectives I’ve been using throughout the write up. And there’ll be plenty more opportunities to discuss Mr Amazing over the next few weeks/months.

I guess this recap isnt as antecdotal as Im expecting a lot of the write ups on this project are gonna be. While the majority of my picks are chosen because they have a big nostalgia factor, this is one that I selected almost solely on merit alone. I just think its that \m/ awesome of a film. My personal connection to it is simply that it floors me whenever I watch it”

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