Reservation Road (DVD)

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Reservation Road (DVD)

A wrenching drama, RESERVATION ROAD is the story of two men whose lives are torn apart by a tragic accident. Ethan Learner (Joaquin Phoenix) and his w...

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80% positive

3 reviews from the community

Review of "Reservation Road (DVD)"

published 11/10/2017 | IzzyS
Member since : 27/07/2006
Reviews : 809
Members who trust : 198
About me :
Thanks for all the rates through the years. Its the end of an era - im thankful to all who talked to me. Apologies for the mass postings but I have a ton of film reviews in drafts! ill try to re-rate as many ppl as I can.
Pro Sinister/atmospheric,unpredictable, cast, thought provoking,
Cons Plot a little slow maybe, a little bleak for some possibly?
very helpful
Did you enjoy it?
Characters / Performances
Special Effects

"A Spooky, Refreshingly Different Crime Drama/Thriller"

- Story -

Two families who live on the same road, find themselves changed forevermore after a shocking event takes place - things will never be the same again but how will they adapt to life, what consequences will there be as a result of said event? you'll have to watch the film to find out.

- More Info., Thoughts & Opinions -

This is a drama thriller film which covers themes including accidents, deception and pursuit of justice. It has quite a sinister feel to it thanks to the unsettling, spooky incidental music and the various characters are shown trying to decide how to move on from the initial event. It is a hard watch at times, with the affected family clearly being profoundly hurt and struggling to deal with what has taken place. I found myself feeling very sorry for the affected characters, given the situation, its something that I wouldn't wish anyone to go through, involving loss (I'm trying not to give too much away but its very difficult to review this kind of film without giving any little hints of aspects of the plot).

I found myself siding or otherwise agreeing with what Ethan (one of the main characters) said - his frustrations and concerns with the legal system and so on. I felt it was more of a psychological drama than anything else, with the film making me wonder what it might be like to be in certain peoples shoes and wondering why people did what they did. As I say, I wouldn't like to go in to too much detail but I felt there was definitely a moral aspect to it and it was relatively thought provoking due to this.

Cast wise, Joaquin Phoenix plays Ethan Learner - he gives an admirably emotional performance, playing his role well. He looked the part of a regular joe, a local businessman affected by a bad situation. Meanwhile, Mira Sorvino plays Ruth Wheldon, Jennifer Connelly plays Grace Learner and Mark Ruffalo plays Dwight Arno, people who were also affected, but in a different way, by what happened. Other cast members include Antoni Corone as Sergeant Burke and Sean Curley as Josh.

The plot, I felt, seemed reasonably unpredictable, in a good way, as I wasn't sure quite how things would pan out but I liked that. Suffice to say, it had me second guessing things for a fair while. Some of the scenes had a real feeling of vulnerability about them, in a sense that we (i.e. the viewer) felt that something sudden may be about to happen but what with the low light etc., we couldn't be sure what may or may not happen. It is relatively unsettling - I wouldn't say its a scary film as such but it is reasonably tense.

Content wise, the film contains one or two instances of violence (if but brief) and very volatile situations, in which quite violent acts may take place. There are a few instances of strong language and generally the main themes of the film are somewhat dark and thus could be somewhat frightening to some people but otherwise there isn't a great deal in the way of graphic content likely to greatly upset or offend people. The film has been given a 15 rating in the UK, which I was a little surprised about, as I'd have thought it would possibly be ok with the slightly lower 12 rating but thats the official classification in any case.

The plot is quite clever in a sense and I'd go so far as to say that its quite refreshing to see how the story develops with the information the viewer has from the get-go, as traditionally we wouldn't know so much. It puts a new spin on things. It isn't in any way an extraordinary film with amazing big budget effects or anything like that, in fact it looked, visually, more like a cheap made-for-TV-film, if anything but as a character development focussed film, it does well.

- Would I Recommend It? -

Yes, I think I would recommend it - as I say, it isn't especially amazing on the visual effects side of things but it features decent performances and is quite thought provoking, plus it is quite sinister, certainly at the start.

- Availability -

If your interested in seeing this, you can buy it on DVD for £4.85 at Amazon UK, at time of publishing this review.

- Final Note / Thank You -

Thank you for reading my review, I hope you found it useful and thanks, as ever, for any and all rates and comments.

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This review was read 70 times and was rated at
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Comments on this review

  • anonymili published 12/11/2017
    I might have to look this one up...
  • siberian-queen published 02/11/2017
  • euphie published 23/10/2017
    vh :o)
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Product Information : Reservation Road (DVD)

Manufacturer's product description

A wrenching drama, RESERVATION ROAD is the story of two men whose lives are torn apart by a tragic accident. Ethan Learner (Joaquin Phoenix) and his wife Emma (Jennifer Connelly) are consumed with grief after their son Josh (Sean Curley) is struck by a hit and run driver. The man behind the wheel was Dwight Arno (Mark Ruffalo), a divorcee who was racing to get his own son back in time in accordance with a custody agreement. A lawyer himself, Dwight is all too familiar with the consequences of his actions. Unsure of what to do, he panics, then conceals his car in his garage. Lucky for him, the police can't find any leads, and the case quickly turns cold. Time passes, and Emma wants her family to heal and get on with their lives, but Ethan has become consumed with finding his son's killer. In a bizarre coincidence, he shows up at Dwight's office seeking legal advice about how to catch and prosecute the perpetrator. The guilt is eating away at Dwight, and he makes a plan to turn himself in, but not before he has a proper goodbye with his own son. When an image suddenly jars Ethan's memory of the accident, he begins to piece things together, causing him to quickly seek his retaliation, which results in a gripping and emotional stand-off.<BR>Joaquin Phoenix and Jennifer Connelly are excellent as the grieving parents, both offering a painfully realistic portrait of grief. Mark Ruffalo is equally impressive as the tormented and conflicted Dwight. While the film works nicely as both thriller and family drama, it at times has an emotional intensity that can be almost difficult to watch. Yet, all tear-jerking elements aside, director Terry George has crafted a smart and complex tale of loss, and the long, difficult road to healing.


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