Movie review: The Descendants

 out of 5 stars

"Paradise? Paradise can go fuck itself."

Whether it is cancer, an aneurism, an accident, or just old age, you can't choose how your loved ones will die, but what is for sure is what you can do while they are alive.  This movie does an excellent job and analyzing relationships, understanding the human condition, and working past the difficult moments in life.  George Clooney, Shailene Woodley and Nick Krause deliver exceptional performances.  (Many of you may not like Nick, but He grew on me).  The movies seemed to be unscripted at many points and you wont know whether to laugh or cry.

The director is Alexander Payne, who brought you Sideways, About Schmidt, Election and most recently Hung (the series on HBO).  He is really good at examining the complexities of human relationships.  Basically George Clooney is a land baron in Hawaii whose wife was in a speed boat accident and it has left her in a coma.  He realizes he has no idea how to care for his daughters and decides to bring them all together and be a family and deal with his relatives and the pending land deal that is on his desk.

I found myself crying much more than normal with this movie.  I think because it it so close to home with my mom.  There were scenes in the movie that I replace George's wife with my mother.  There is no way  to really be prepared to say goodbye to someone you love, regardless of how well you prep.  Somehow the universe jumps in and holds your hand and eases you through the transition and sets you down on the other side.  Sometimes the set down is peaceful and other times the landing is rocky but the truth is that you will always pull through.

I loved the relationships in this movie especially between George and Shailene.  It made me realize that so many of my fears and limiting beliefs are bullshit.  The ending scene in the movie, which I am not going to give away, made me, the only one in the theater clap.  This was a very well done movie and I was able to connect with it.  I move it into my top ten.  If you have some time to kill, go check it out and tell me what you thought.  I would love to hear from you.

Until next time...
Chad BordesLife2 Comments