Where do you begin when you’ve seen the worst movie ever made? “Reservation Road” is supposedly a “touching” story about loss, forgiveness, redemption and other touchy-feely stuff. But in actuality it’s crap, on a bed of dung, wrapped in a blanket of shit.
Joaquin Phoenix and Jennifer Connelly play Ethan and Grace Learner, whose son is killed in a motor accident by Dwight Arno, played by Mark Ruffalo. Through the story they come together in a twist of odd coincidences, which finally brings the story to a conclusion.
For the first 20 or 30 minutes, the nicest thing you can say is that the acting is pretty good. After that, the whole movie falls apart. The filming is ridiculously sporadic: cutting from short scenes to another character and back, making it hard to keep up with what you’re being told.
Ultimately, the director relies on overdramatizing everything in order to make the audience feel the emotion, as opposed to writing a good story. The only redeemable aspect of this movie was that Jennifer Connelly’s character was passably believable.
As for extras, there aren’t any to choose from. Some deleted scenes (which is ironic, since this whole movie should have been deleted). A “behind the scenes” video of interviews that is more pretentious than David Blaine walking down the street with a deck of cards. Listening to these actors talking about their “characters,” while at the same time making it clear that they’re not trivializing the real victims, was the most nauseating thing, apart from listening to these award-winners explain their craft. If only they had applied some of that craft to the film they actually made. The first episode of the current season of “Friday Night Lights” is included, which was better than the movie itself.
Representing yet another product of post-writer’s strike rushed material. If you had any reservations about seeing this movie, listen to them and keep driving by.