Rating: 5 stars out of 5
The Stars: Nicole Kidman, Aaron Eckhart, Dianne Wiest, Sandra Oh
The Story: Becca and Howie Corbett was once a happily married couple living content, idyllic lives. It was not until one day, their 4-year-old son Danny runs out of their front yard into an oncoming car. Danny’s passing and the irreparable grief that it inflicts on them overwhelms the fabric of their existence. Eight months on, both are still struggling to cope, but in vastly different ways. Howie clings on to a support group and friend Gaby, while Becca strikes up a friendship with the blameless teenager who killed her son. As the trauma refuses to heal, Becca and Howie find themselves withdrawing, even from each other.
The Buzz: Acclaimed stage scribe David Lindsay-Abaire adapted his own Pulitzer-Prize winning play of the same name into this feature film. Notably, Nicole Kidman turned down the chance to star in Woody Allen’s You Will Meet A Tall Dark Stranger in order to do this instead. It’s a choice that seems to have paid off, given her dozens of nominations for best lead actress in the Academy Awards, Golden Globes, Independent Spirit Awards and Screen Actors Guild Award among others.
inSing says: Utterly unmarred by sentimentality or sensationalism, you will not find a more honest, unflinching account of the grief process than The Rabbit Hole. John Cameron Mitchell’s film isn’t here to show off by delivering hysterics, it’s often nuanced and quiet, a reflective effect that makes the occasional torrent of emotion even more startling. Gut-wrenching or heartbreaking aren’t even adequate words to describe the simple tragedy of parents losing their child. We say “simple” because it’s not uncommon but when you’re faced with its reality, but there’s nothing simple about it – it’s a pain worse than anything else in this world.
The Rabbit Hole is sensitive, rueful and sometimes even consumed by rage. Aaron Eckhart is great as the grieving father but it’s Nicole Kidman who astounds. Her outbursts aren’t entirely rational but what do you expect? There isn’t anything rational about your son dying. Becca is broken but attempts to will away her grief. Howie on the other hand is open about his pain. He needs the support of counsellors, fellow mourners and friends. The one person though who refuses to indulge him is his own wife. Their distinct yet entirely understandable reactions threaten to destroy their marriage.
Becca begins to secretly meet with the boy who accidentally ran over her son (Miles Teller) and strangely enough, begins to bond with him by sharing their guilt-ridden feelings. The kid is not at fault, just at the wrong place at the wrong time, but he feels burdened as well. Teller’s pensiveness mixed in with forced stoicism makes his minor character a tragic figure himself. Everyone in The Rabbit Holewalks around shell-shocked and though the weight on their shoulders will never disappear, they must all learn to bear it and carry on.
Hidzir Junaini, aka inSing.com's Movie Lover, is 24-years-old and a wealthy playboy billionaire by day and a caped crusader by night. Only one of those is true. He’s actually a freelance writer, blogger, full-time film buff and some-time socially awkward nerd. He also writes about music, restaurants and nightlife for Metrowize Asia. Hidzir is the winner of the inaugural inSing Movie Lover contest that garnered over 1,000 participants. The Movie Lover contest is a search for a candidate who possesses outstanding passion for movies and a talent for writing engaging movie reviews.
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