Earlier this week I was fortunate enough to be chosen as one of Mumsnet Bloggers to watch the preview of Labor Day yesterday, before it’s release today.
Labor Day featuring Kate Winslet (Adele) and Josh Brolin (Frank), directed by Jason Reitman is a poignant tale of a depressed single mother who’s isolated herself from the world after experiences in her life left her a nervous (and quivering) wreck. The story is told through the eyes of her 13 year old son Henry (played by Gattlin Griffith, voiceover by Tobey Maguire).
Adele and Henry are confronted by Frank in the grocery store and forced to take him back to their place. Frank is a convicted murderer serving 18 to life when he escaped from the prison hospital. The movie carries on to show Adele coming out of her shell and falling in love with the man who she is technically holding fugitive. He takes on the father figure role in the house by teaching Henry how to throw a ball, change a tyre and doing all the odd jobs that need done. We then see his softer side as he, very seductively, teaches them how to made a peach pie.
Throughout the movie there are flashbacks showing a younger Frank portraying him to be the soft and gentle man that we start getting to know. A series of regretful events are what put him in jail.
I absolutely love Kate Winslet and think she did a superb job of portraying a fallen, sad, agoraphobic mother and Josh Brolin added some muscle to the movie. Gattlin Griffith was an odd child (I guess he can’t be blamed given the circumstances he was growing up in).
What I liked about the movie was it’s portrayal of love and dedication. Frank, although initially intimidating, has a soft and gentle side I came to admire. I liked the music, the cinematography and the use of sunlight to depict a sleepy town on a hot Labor Day Weekend.
What I didn’t like about the movie was Adele’s total and utter desperation (she falls for a convict who gives her a little attention and a few suggestive lines, in two days), the way the son is sometimes referred to as Henry and other times as Hank and the son’s untoward actions at the climax of the movie.
I’d give Labor Day 3 out of 5 stars.
Disclaimer: “I am a member of the Mumsnet Bloggers Network Panel, a group of parent bloggers who have volunteered to review products, services, events and brands for Mumsnet. I have not paid for the product or to attend an event. I have editorial control and retain full editorial integrity.”