Title

Global Visions Film Series Presents “The Kids Are All Right”

Document Type

Article

Publication Date

4-1-2011

Abstract

Global Visions Film Series Presents “The Kids Are All Right”

Review by Madisson Whitman Wednesday, April 27, @ 7:00 p.m. Memorial Union Lecture Bowl The film is free and open to the public. A $1.00 donation is suggested.

The Kids Are All Right , Lisa Cholodenko's 2010 comedy, follows Nic (Annette Bening) and Jules (Julianne Moore), the lesbian parents of two teenage children, Joni and Laser. When Laser convinces Joni to track down their sperm donor, the kids are introduced to Paul (Mark Ruffalo), a laid-back bohemian who becomes thrilled with the prospects of a family. Nic and Jules aren't completely on board, but when Paul invests in Jules' business, attitudes change. For better or for worse, Nic and Jules' family life is ultimately interrupted and irrevocably altered.

Produced at a time when the notion of family is constantly being negotiated and redefined, The Kids Are All Right presents an engaging glimpse into the lives of successful lesbian parents in a manner that struggles with issues of gender, sexuality, family, relationships, and parenting, but also manages to remain warm and charming while doing so. The Kids Are All Right takes a complex situation, perhaps especially because it tackles, to some extent, the meaning of marriage, and turns it into a statement on what family means, all while offering strong performances from a talented cast.

While The Kids Are All Right can be easily be interpreted as a commentary on the defining points of marriage and relationships, in that it heavily emphasizes commitment and other components that transcend the limits placed upon gender and sexuality in relation to marriage, consider the film in the context of its production and its contributions to the ongoing dialogue of marriage and family.

That Nic and Jules are lesbians is not completely central to the plot. This is not to suggest that sexuality is irrelevant to the events of the film; rather, this general lack of focus on the sexual orientations of the main characters serves to normalize the relationships depicted, suggesting that the issues with which the characters engage are perhaps telling of a broader aspect of the human experience.

The responses to the film, presented in the form of critical praise and numerous awards, indicate that The Kids Are All Right is timely and relevant to the public discussion on marriage and family.

The Kids Are All Right received numerous awards including the the Golden Globe Award for Best Motion Picture - Musical or Comedy, and Annette Bening was awarded the Golden Globe Award for Best Actress - Motion Picture Musical or Comedy. The film also received 4 Academy Award nominations, including one for Best Picture, at the 83rd Academy Awards.

Rated R. 106 minutes.

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