29 Feb. 2012

The Descendants - A review by Lee Hayden

My name is Lee and I am working at the Model for the last two weeks as part of my TY work experience. I had the entire Model Cinema to myself yesterday as I watched The Descendants. Here is what I think of it.

The director Alexander Payne tells a tale of Matt King (George Clooney) and his difficult journey as he attempts to do good by numerous family members, become the sole career for his two daughters, and please the community, all while finding out his wife’s secret life after she suffers a serious boating accident.
The story, set in Hawaii, meant that throughout the film we are shown shoots of some of the most beautiful blue skies and sunny beaches, this brought together with Hawaiian music allows us to become totally immersed in the life and home of the King family.

Clooney gives a brilliant performance throughout the film taking on every impossible decision, he’s full of anger and incredible sadness as his character fights to keep his head above water in this confusing time. But it is also worth remembering other performances of Matt’s children, Alexandra (Shailene Woodley) and Scottie (Amara Miller). Shailene takes on the role of a rebellious teenager turning young adult with ease, while her character helps and supports Matt through some of the film’s more difficult scenes. For Amara, this film is her very first performance as an actress on the big stage.

Considering she worked alongside one or two industry giants, Amara seems unfazed as she sinks into the role with confidence, and delivers some truly funny lines.
One of the most memorable moments is a shot of Alexandra King, screaming in despair underwater in her pool. The Descendants is an inspiring film with brilliant acting. It has a very good story line and its well thought out.

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