Title – Meadowland (2015)
Director – Reed Morano (feature debut)
Cast – Olivia Wilde, Luke Wilson, Giovanni Ribisi, John Leguizamo, Juno Temple
Plot – After their beloved son goes missing, married couple Sarah (Wilde) and Phil (Wilson) find their lives and marriage slowly crumbling around them as they struggle to recover from their unimaginable loss.
“I think she’s going to figure it out by herself”
Review by Eddie on 18/10/2016
If your feeling down in the dumps or there’s a gloomy cloud hovering over your head then Meadowland is not the film you’ll be wanting to watch, actually it’s about as far away as what’d you’d want to be watching as you could imagine as one time D.O.P turned feature length director Reed Morano’s film is one of the most dour films to come around in quite some time.
The dour nature that imbeds itself into almost every single scene of this sometimes heart rendering bleak tale of grief, loss and heartache may be too much for some to bare but it’s also in many ways Morano’s greatest achievement, even though it doesn’t make for typically entertaining viewing.
Given a meatier role than she’s normally afforded, Olivia Wilde does a commendable job as the lost mother of a missing boy Sarah and alongside the well casted if under used Luke Wilson as her equally lost husband Phil the two actors give Meadowland their all and tackle the hard subject matter with aplomb even though we’re sadly as an audience never truly aloud into their characters inner sanctum which hurts the films overall emotional gut punches.
Morano, as is the case with most first time directors, unfortunately fails to properly engage the audience into the films overall heart and soul and characters like Giovanni Ribisi’s underused Tim and the odd appearance of Juno Temple’s seductress like Mackenzie seem like missed opportunities while Sarah’s odd feelings towards mentally handicapped school student Adam never really ring true especially towards the films last act and the film is undoubtedly at its strongest when the narrative focus’s more intently on the plight of Sarah and Phil as they consider what may’ve become of their lost son and how they deal with the pain alongside each other.
Sometimes powerful, often frustrating and always from the get go grey cloud gloomy, Meadowland is an impressive first up effort by Morano and features committed turns by the normally misused Olivia Wilde and sometimes auto piloted Luke Wilson that make it a film worthy of your time as long as you’re willing to go along with its depressive nature.
3 stale car snacks out of 5