Revolutionary Road

Saturday night was a night in for me. My flatmate and I rented a DVD — Revolutionary Road, ordered some take-away and sat in front of the telly on a rainy night.

I really enjoyed the movie. So much so, I was surprised that it didn’t win the best picture (while I liked Slumdog…I didn’t think it was all that great).

The movie is set in the 50s and begins with the main characters falling in love and getting married. We are then forwarded to their married life where she, April, is a housewife attempting to be an actress (but apparently not doing too great) and he, Frank, is working in a dead-end job he hates. They live in the perfect suburb, on a perfect street in a perfect-looking house. They are the perfect family with two kids.

In fact, it almost had a Stepford feel to it.

Anyway, April comes up with a brainwave one morning about leaving America and going to Paris and actually living. She decides she will work while he can study and think about what it is that he really wants to do in life. While hesitant initially, he agrees. However, everyone else (their friends, neighbours and his colleagues) think they are nuts. After all, what man can have his wife support him? How can this perfect family throw away everything and start a new life? How unrealistic is that?

The only person that thinks they are doing the right thing is a guy who has recently been in psychiatric care. In my opinion, the only ‘mental illness’ he had was being compulsively honest. Which everyone else fails to be.

Anyway, the plans of the Wheelers get foiled when he is offered a promotion and she is pregnant.
I love dark movies and this was one of them. I think I managed to relate to some things because US in the 50s had values similar to what I probably grew up with, in the 80s and 90s. The movie subtly looks at women’s issues. The woman is secondary. A woman must want to have children and if she doesn’t she is ‘mentally unstable’. A man must work and cannot be supported by his wife. The fakeness of society comes across even back then.

And of course, something that exists even today — how we all wear a mask. We pretend. We all come across as perfect to the rest but each and every one of us is fucked up in our own way. Not just the people that admit to having a mental illness.



All of us.

Until next time,


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  • Ersa
    1 June 2009 at 2:32 am

    hmmm…i’ve been meaning to watch this one…

  • amol.naik
    1 June 2009 at 7:10 am

    Nice site….going to straight to my blogroll….

    Good work…

  • Gigi
    2 June 2009 at 1:26 am

    I love this movie.”We pretend. We all come across as perfect to the rest but each and every one of us is fucked up in our own way.”- Totally agree with you.We all wear masks all the time and by wearing a mask, we try to hide our identity from others and falsely believe that we are perfect but sadly we are fucked up.

  • legallyalien
    2 June 2009 at 4:49 am

    I just downloaded this movie. Eeeps. Don’t tell on me! šŸ˜› I adore Kate Winslet.
    I agree with you about Slumdog too btw. Good but not that great right? And I love, loooove A R Rahman, but Jai Ho is hardly his best… Roja and Bombay still haunt me šŸ˜‰ Oh well..thats another topic. I digress.
    Will watch this one this weekend.

  • Psych Babbler
    2 June 2009 at 5:07 am

    @ Ersa: Highly recommended!

    @ Amol: Welcome and thanks! šŸ™‚

    @ Gigi: It was a good one, wasn’t it?

    @ legallyalien: Don’t worry, won’t dob! šŸ˜‰

    And definitely agree with you on Roja and Bombay — by far, the best of Rahman’s work!

  • indianhomemaker
    3 June 2009 at 8:30 am

    I am going to try and watch this one. Sounds really good, and it is relevant even today , in India we have so many attitudes, and so many different classes I know there are many who will not consider a woman’s dreams or her success as important…

    Nice post Psych Babbler!

  • SSQuo
    3 June 2009 at 4:30 pm

    I admit it, I read only a few lines of this post, and I refuse to read more because I don’t want to know more about the story! But I will come back to read your review of it.

    And oh! I second your opinion on Slumdog!

  • Psych Babbler
    5 June 2009 at 4:37 am

    @ IHM: Yeah it is relevant even today which is what surprised me considering it was set in the 50s. Do watch although I must add, my flatmate found it a bit depressing.

    @ SSQuo: Don’t worry…you can read it later! šŸ˜› But definitely a must watch.

  • Ersa
    10 June 2009 at 12:16 am

    just watched the movie…loved it…tragic, but a good one šŸ™‚

  • Life
    13 June 2009 at 6:19 am

    Me too agree with your opinion about the movie as well as woman’s position yesterday and today as well !

    The best thing i liked in your post is description about that one ill man- Compulsively Honest !!!

    I loved the movie too šŸ™‚