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We Need to Talk About Kevin, but I Wish We Wouldn't Have to!!!

Bitter, Bitter Balcony, Movie Review, We Need to Talk About Kevin 2011Lynne Ramsay, Rory KinnearLynne RamsayTilda Swinton, John C. Reilly, Ezra MillerLionel Shriver (novel) Bitter,Bitterometer,meter We Need to Talk About Kevin(2011)
 

Massacres in workplaces and schools appear to be a tragic reoccurrence in the fabric of American society. While many arguments have been presented to dissect the reasons of such unfathomable, massive violence, it’s still one of the bewildering and troubling crimes that somehow feel prevalent, if not exclusive, in this country. “We Need to Talk about Kevin” explores the issue not through the eyes of the assailant or the victims, but from the traumatized peripheral of Eva (Tilda Swinton), the mother of a teenager responsible for a Columbine-like killing spree. The film, told in flashbacks, has Eva reminisce on the extremely malign relationship with her son Kevin, from pregnancy to the bitter confrontations with her innately wicked son. Eva tries to understand what lead to this horrible event while attempting to find some normalcy in a community that blames her for this horror.

Scottish director Lynne Ramsay brings a feminist underlining to the story. “We Need to Talk about Kevin” is as more about the guilt of an unwanted, or at least unexpected, family life. Kevin’s violent bloodletting is an extreme manifestation of such turn. Eva, who is an artist, views Kevin to an extent as the determent to her youthful aspirations to live a bohemian life in France. The trials of motherhood are depicted as an extreme, unrewarding ordeal as Eva struggles with Kevin’s nuisances while getting no disciplinary support from her nice but very naive husband Franklyn (John C. Reilly). While Eva forcefully adapts to a domesticated life, Kevin’s strife just grows as he enters his adolescence, not to mention the arrival of a new sister that Kevin turns sour on.

Ramsay brings surrealist imagery to Eva’s insurmountable shame. The color red is as much a character as a scarlet letter that haunts Eva in both her dreams and in reality. The use of Classic folk and rock tunes not only enhance the creepiness of the film but add a narrative sync. The grand Tilda Swinton is once again excellent as Eva, a woman whose life will always be marked by infamy yet finds some redemption at the end. I really believe both these women brought their best to a movie that, quite frankly, should have been better.

While I admire the layers that this film is willing to examine, “We Need to Talk about Kevin” is filled with one-dimensional male characters who serve as plot devices in a way you would see in horror schlock like “Orphan.” Kevin is featured as such a faux Anti-Christ, he might as well have 666 tattooed in his forehead. Also, Franklyn is so oblivious to how much a brat his son is ridiculous. In a pivotal scene, Kevin opens a package he ordered of large locks and dismisses his father’s faint inquiry with an excuse that he’s going to sale them at school. Since when have locks for doors been in high demand for 16 year olds? It would be natural to be at least suspicious, especially with several bizarre happenings that transpire around Kevin. There’re so many signs of Kevin’s bad behavior that are looked the other way that really shatter the potentially richer and bolder tale of Eva’s plight. “We Need to Talk about Kevin” is unfortunately myopic, and perhaps Eva would have been better off spilling Holy Water and that little son of a bitch, telling Franklyn to grow a pair, and fly off to France on the first flight available.

Trailer:

Official website:
We Need to Talk About Kevin

Pics:
We Need to Talk About Kevin2011Lynne Ramsay, Rory KinnearLynne RamsayTilda Swinton, John C. Reilly, Ezra MillerLionel Shriver (novel)  We Need to Talk About Kevin2011Lynne Ramsay, Rory KinnearLynne RamsayTilda Swinton, John C. Reilly, Ezra MillerLionel Shriver (novel)  We Need to Talk About Kevin2011Lynne Ramsay, Rory KinnearLynne RamsayTilda Swinton, John C. Reilly, Ezra MillerLionel Shriver (novel) 

Credits:
Directed by: Lynne Ramsay
Written by: Lynne Ramsay, Rory Kinnear
Based on work(s) by: Lionel Shriver (novel)
Cast: Tilda Swinton, John C. Reilly, Ezra Miller


Source of the Bitter: John Rojas

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