The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

Movie Review-Labor Day surprisingly thoughtful, passionately romantic film

By Heather Horton/entertainment editor

Photo courtesy Paramount Pictures  Kate Winslet stars as Adele, a single mom, alongside Josh Brolin as escaped prisoner Frank in Labor Day.
Photo courtesy Paramount Pictures Kate Winslet stars as Adele, a single mom, alongside Josh Brolin as escaped prisoner Frank in Labor Day.

The passionate love story Labor Day is a mature “chick flick” with depth, demonstrating that bad boys can turn out good.

What makes this film unique is the perspective. Narration is told from the viewpoint of Henry, a 13-year-old boy and the man he becomes as a result of this Labor Day weekend.

Adele, played by Kate Winslet, is a reclusive single mom to Henry. The pair has a chance encounter with an escaped prisoner named Frank, played by Josh Brolin.

The movie is an adaptation of Joyce Maynard’s book of the same name. Maynard’s ability to develop complex, meaningful characters alongside director Jason Reitman’s ability to manage dynamic actors is what gives this movie its substance.

The depth of each character is developed quickly and efficiently. This quick investment into the characters goes a long way to making the absurdity of the situation more realistic.

Initially, Brolin’s character elicits an uncomfortable awkwardness with his terse staccato dialogue, and it’s uncertain whether he can truly be trusted.

Adele suffers from emotional and psychological trauma, which is described in some detail later, and the underlying emotional response to her is pity.

Frank’s rugged charm combined with Adele’s loneliness elicits an eagerness to accept Frank as a trustworthy character and cheer on the couple as they attempt to evade the law and hold on to what they have discovered in each other.

The story is tastefully expressed through the thoughts and feelings of Henry, who needs a male role model in his life.

Even though Frank is a felon, he meets the needs of both Henry and Adele, and at one point in the movie expresses, “I am here to save you, Adele.”

A large portion of the movie is spent romanticizing the characters, which for all intents and purposes is exactly what a good love story should focus on. However, it makes the conclusion of the movie somewhat rushed.

Overall, Labor Day has a complex, rich storyline as well as decent actors, which makes watching this flick worth it.

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