Revolutionary Road

Character: Frank Wheeler
Directed by: Sam Mendes
Written by: Richard Yates (Novel), Justin Haythe (Scrrenplay)
Produced by: John Hart, Scott Rudin, Sam Mendes and Bobby Cohen;
Other cast: Kate Winslet, Kathy Bates, Kathryn Hahn, Michael Shannon, Zoe Kazan and David Harbour
Release date: December 26, 2008
Genre: Drama, Romance
Running time: 1h 59min

Adapted from the landmark novel by Richard Yates, Revolutionary Road is an incisive portrait of an American marriage seen through the eyes of Frank (three-time Academy Award® nominee Leonardo DiCaprio) and April (five-time Academy Award® nominee Kate Winslet) Wheeler. Yates’ story of 1950’s America poses a question that has been reverberating through modern relationships ever since: can two people break away from the ordinary without breaking apart? Frank and April have always seen themselves as special, different, ready and willing to live their lives based on higher ideals. So, as soon as they move into their new house on Revolutionary Road, they proudly declare their independence from the suburban inertia that surrounds them and determine never to be trapped by the social confines of their era. Yet for all their charm, beauty and irreverence, the Wheelers find themselves becoming exactly what they didn’t expect: a good man with a routine job whose nerve has gone missing; a less-than-happy homemaker starving for fulfillment and passion; an American family with lost dreams, like any other. Driven to change their fates, April hatches an audacious plan to start all over again, to leave the comforts of Connecticut behind for the great unknown of Paris. But when the plan is put in motion, each spouse is pushed to extremes – one to escape whatever the cost, the other to save all that they have, no matter the compromises.

Filming Locations
Beacon Falls, Connecticut, USA
Bethel, Connecticut, USA
Broadway, Manhattan, New York City, New York, USA
Connecticut, USA
Darien, Connecticut, USA
Fairfield, Connecticut, USA
Grand Central Station, Manhattan, New York City, New York, USA
Lower Manhattan, Manhattan, New York City, New York, USA
New York City, New York, USA
Norwalk Community College, Norwalk, Connecticut, USA
Norwalk, Connecticut, USA
Pinewood Lake, Trumbull, Connecticut, USA
Shelton, Connecticut, USA
Southport, Connecticut, USA
Stamford, Connecticut, USA
Thomaston, Connecticut, USA
Tribeca, Manhattan, New York City, New York, USA
Trumbull, Connecticut, USA
Westchester County, New York, USA

My Review

I want to thank Click Communications for sending me the DVD five days ahead of the U.S. release which is June 2, 2009 to write this review for you. Though, I am not a professional writer, I am stating my opinion on the release and telling you my thoughts on what I have previewed.

Upon receiving the package of the DVD, I didn’t know what to expect as I had previously viewed the movie before in theaters. The cover art of the DVD was very simple.  I thought it could have been much more colorful than it was, although the back of the DVD cover did make up for it. The disc was plain gray with the title Revolutionary Road in silver. However, never judge a book by its cover.

The Movie:  I watched twice as I could not get enough of the performances between Leonardo DiCaprio and Kate Winslet. It was great to watch the movie again. The colors were much better than in theaters and the audio was superb. The extra contents of the DVD were very exciting to preview. Of course, being a Leo fan for a little more than 10 years, I always love seeing DiCaprio act. But his performance in this flick with his co-star Kate Winslet, who we all know from Titanic, did an extremely good performance as Frank Wheeler. Kate Winslet played April Wheeler perfectly, a little more crazier than I expected, as the book didn’t really give April much character since it was from Frank Wheeler’s point of view. On the DVD, especially during the making of Lives of Quiet Desperation: The Making of Revolutionary Road, every aspect of the movie was explained and nothing was left out.  In my opinion they covered every aspect, including costumes, locations, the actors, time schedules, etc. This was a very interesting piece to watch.

The biggest and most exciting part to view was the deleted scenes. I had been anticipating to see these. I wanted to see if they would put any scenes from the book that they had left out in the movie like the scene titled, “Dear Frank.”  This scene would have blown away the Academy, the Oscars and the SAGS. It was a pity that Leonardo DiCaprio didn’t get nominated for his part as Frank Wheeler. I think if the Academy would have seen this particular scene, Leonardo may have received a nomination for it. It tore my heart out as I watched Leonardo/Frank travel to the restroom to see what April had done. They didn’t show what was in the bath tub, though, the book cleared that up with detail. The gut-wrenching scene where Frank reads April’s letter saying, “Whatever Happens, don’t blame yourself. I love you,” showed that April really did love and care for Frank, no matter what she said all through the story. As Frank cried upon reading the letter. it was just heart-wrenching. Leonardo’s performance for this scene was superior. It made you want to hug him and tell him that it would be okay.

The other deleted scenes gave us even more on April and Frank’s relationship. These include:  I’m Sorry, Birthday, Big Shot, and Nothing’s Permanent. These scenes were not that important, but they did explain even more on the overall story. Since the scenes were short I think they should have been added to the movie.

On a technical aspect, the screen for the menus and special features were nothing spectacular, just images with low colors and minimal text. They didn’t even add the scene names for the Scenes Selection and there was no DVD insert. I don’t know if this is gonna be something new that companies are doing to DVD’s, but I love knowing what scenes are by name, in case you ever want to share a scene with a friend and tell them what they might have missed when viewing any given scene for a movie. The Opening Menu could have had much more than just a picture of April and Frank with the features underneath it.

Defiance, There will be Blood and The Curious Case of Benjamin Button were, in my opinion, great choices for previews. It was too bad they didn’t add the Revolutionary Road Trailer or perhaps TV Spots.

My overall review, is this is a must have for any Leo and Kate fan. Even if you’re not a Leo or Kate fan, the story will capture your heart.

Below are more details on the DVD.

Presentation:  Widescreen 2.35:1/16×9
Audio: English Dolby Digital 5.1, Spanish Dolby Digital 5.1, French Dolby Digital 5.1
Subtitles: English, French, Spanish
Closed-captioned
Supplements Subtitles: English, Spanish, French
Runtime: 118 min.
Rated: R
Release Date: 6/2/2009

Bonus:

Audio Commentary with Director Sam Mendes and Screenwriter Justin Haythe
Lives of Quiet Desperation: The Making of Revolutionary Road
5 Deleted Scenes with Optional Commentary
3 Movie Previews: Defiance, There Will be Blood, The Curious Case of Benjamin Button

Script
Download Here

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