If there's one film I've really soured upon over the last several months, it's been Lisa Cholodenko's The Kids Are All Right, the well-publicized smash-hit out of Sundance and a sure-fire lock for one of the ten Best Picture slots this January. I originally gave the film a B- back in July, but dare I say I might have been far too forgiving.
Now the film is very sprightly amusing and masterfully acted by all involved - there's no denying that for the first 60-70 minutes or so that you're watching a top-shelf entertainment that's about relatable, fully-formed and authentic characters that each have their good and bad moments.
But alas, I was absolutely appalled by the last ten-fifteen minutes or so in which, yes, Mark Ruffalo's earthy, vegetable-growing biological father is just kicked to the curb so that Choldoenko's timely, liberal-minded message can take center stage. (By the way, the film's politics are not the issue - I agree with them - it just seemed drastically short-sighted and self-indulgent in those final scenes.)
That scene has been kicked around quite a bit around the blog-o-sphere since it's release over the summer, and I'm certainly not the only person who feels this way. Nominate the performances all you want, nominate Mark Ruffalo, please - but this is a lame duck.