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A wonderfully human indie drama...
on 6 April 2010
I'm not going to lie, Robert Pattinson was a big part of my decision to see this film for the first time. However, as a film nerd, I really did fall in love with the film.
It is a wonderfully raw, extremely human indie drama about how the actions we think are meaningless can have a positive impact on the lives of others. The script is very witty and the characters are extremely relatable. Pattinson's Character, Tyler, is approaching his 22nd birthday and still mourning the death of his older brother, who died on the day he turned 22. His brothers death has fragmented his family-His parents have divorced and his wall-street father has no interest in relating to either him or his younger sister Caroline, who is greatly upset by her fathers ambivolence. After a night out with his friend Aiden which results in a brush with the police, Tyler meets Ally, a girl from Queens who, following the murder of her mother, has developed a very different view of life to Tyler, along with a firy relationship with her possessive father. They fall in love. However, the romance isn't the focus of the story but rather one of it's parts. It is a story about family and relationships.
Pattinson puts in an excellent performance, refusing to make Tyler either a rebellious hero or a spoilt brat but instead successfully conveying his pain, rage and frustration. His scens with ruby jerins, a child actor to watch, are extremely touching. Emilie De Ravin is also good as Ally, bringing a real warmth to the role. She and Pattinson have great chemistry and the characters romance is allowed to unfold in a very realistic way. Pierce Brosnan does a great job as Tyler's father, adding depth to what could have been a very predictable character. However, I do think that Chris Cooper, an excellent actor, is underused in the role of Ally's father.
The ending is a highly controversial one that will split audiences but which I loved, finding it harrowing, devestating, and extremely haunting. It is an ending that will stay with you long after the film is over and which will make you re-evaluate everything you've seen in light of it. Again it is handled in a very touching, human way. A real little gem of a film. Whata pity that, because of controversy surrounding the ending which has had critics tearing it apart like ravenous wolves, it may not get the recognition it deserves.