The Kids Are All Right—Movie

With the release of the smart comedy, The Kids Are All Right, the 2010 Sundance Film Festival continues to unveil a number of terrific films.

Written by Lisa Cholodenko and Stuart Blumberg and directed by Cholodenko, The Kids Are All Right takes an unflinching look at a family consisting of lesbian parents whose children have the same sperm donor. Nic (Annette Bening) and Jules (Julianne Moore) live with their two teenage children, Joni (Mia Wasikowska) and Laser (Josh Hucherson) in a breathtakingly beautiful bungalow in Los Angeles. Nic is a doctor and Jules is the stay-at-home mom, still in search of a career for herself.

The story is set in motion when Laser prods Joni, before she leaves home to start college, to take the steps necessary for them to find their biological father. With the help of the sperm bank and the agreement of the donor, Paul (Mark Ruffalo), children and father meet.  Paul is a good-natured bachelor/restaurateur, who actually embraces the new additions to his life.

The Kids Are All Right’s acting is sheer perfection. Annette Bening and Julianne Moore have real chemistry and are at the top of their game. Mark Ruffalo nails his role and relative newcomers Wasikowska (most recently Alice in Alice in Wonderland) and Hutcherson more than hold their own against this talented cast. A shout-out must be given to the casting director. The two children could definitely pass for the real-life offspring of this combined family.

So what do we learn from this from this complicated family? That same-sex coupling and sperm donor aside, this family is just like any other family, full of laughter, tears, problems and forgiveness. Their story is just better told than most.

3 ½ nuggets out of 4

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