The facade of the perfect life can be fleeting. Director Sam Mendes creates a compelling portrait of 1950s suburban couple in Revolutionary Road. The suburban couple, in a sense, are considered the perfect couple who defies conformity. Their second collaboration since the 1997 movie Titanic, Leonardo DiCaprio and Kate Winslet reunite to play the couple with much emotional energetic acting that fills every scene with heartache and frustration. DiCaprio plays Frank Wheeler, a temperamental husband who rages on with an emasculated presence whenever April Wheeler (Kate Winslet) quarrels with him. Winslet plays the free-spirited wife who wants to escape the dullness of suburban life and move to Paris. Their lives are frustrating as they continue to live this decaying marriage in suburbia. The movie is enjoyable through it’s timescale of the 1950s. There are many outdated social conventions: a woman can’t support her husband, a woman is crazy to have an abortion, living in Paris is a dream. It’s a different world that shows how much our society has shifted considering gender roles.
A majority of the movie shows the couple constantly fight over issues like abortion, running away, and non-conformity. Their best is during the big fight when April realizes she doesn’t love him anymore as DiCaprio demonstrates a fury over her actions. DiCaprio plays a different role as a feeble man who enjoys the praise from his promoted job. Their fates are heart wrenching. I cannot ruin the ending, but it’s a sad turn for the couple. This movie is absolutely brilliant with its harrowing acting and its depiction of a dark image of the suburban couple that goes through the monotony of everyday existence. The American Dream is not what it appears; It has flaws and can be hellish.
My Rating: A-