Reservation Road

Release Date: October 19, 2007
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Limited release

Movie of the Day for Tuesday, September 18, 2007
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She enjoys the pleasure of hiding Paul Bettany from view.

On the Big Board
Position Staff In Brief
78/214 Max Braden That everyone is so closely linked feels contrived, but the actors manage some decent performances. The situation is what will get audiences sniffling.

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The last time Terry George co-wrote and directed a film about somewhat dark subject matter, the result was three Academy Award nominations – including one for star Don Cheadle and a screenwriting nomination for George (previously nominated for In the Name of the Father). In Reservation Road, two of cinema's most, um, interesting-looking leading men join forces in a film about somewhat dark subject matter with Terry George directing and co-writing. Are more Academy Award nominations in the offing?

Reservation Road stars Joaquin Phoenix and Mark Ruffalo as fathers whose lives intertwine after the accidental death of one of their children. Jennifer Connelly and Mira Sorvino play Phoenix and Ruffalo's wives, who must deal with not only their own grief, but the reactions of their husbands to the tragedy.

Based on the book by John Burnham Schwartz (who co-wrote the screenplay with Terry George), Reservation Road is certainly Oscar-bait – but how will a dark tale of death, anguish and revenge play with audiences? The talented cast is certainly a selling point for the film, with Academy Award winners Connelly and Sorvino (actually finding a role in a film with potential to be good for the first time essentially since she won the Oscar) in the less showy roles of the wives. Ruffalo, who should have been nominated for an Academy Award for his work in You Can Count on Me (though his nomination for an MTV Movie Award for 13 Going on 30 helped cushion the blow) and Phoenix (two nominations) both add to Reservation Road's ample pedigree. (Les Winan/BOP)

Vital statistics for Reservation Road
Main Cast Joaquin Phoenix, Mark Ruffalo, Jennifer Connelly
Supporting Cast Mira Sorvino, Elle Fanning
Director Terry George
Screenwriter John Burnham Schwartz, Terry George
Distributor Focus Features
Talent in red has entry in The Big Picture



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