We Need to Talk About Kevin: Film #87 of Film 365

Wednesday 2nd November 2011

Director: Lynne Ramsey
Year: 2011
Stars: Tilda Swinton, John C. Reilly, Ezra Miller

Now this is better. Let's hope all of November's movies are like this, and maybe I'll feel motivated to watch more than in the last couple of months. I had wanted to see We Need to Talk about Kevin at the Toronto Film Festival, as that was when it premiered. We did request tickets, but because it was such a big movie and we were unlucky when the box numbers were drawn, we didn't get to see it. So when it got released a couple of months later in the UK, I was very keen to see it. Oddly, it only seemed to be showing at one of the art house cinemas - I thought it would be a bigger movie than that. But I like the Watershed in Bristol, so had no problems with going there to see this.

We Need to Talk About Kevin is adapted from the book by Lionel Shriver. It is all about Eva Katchadorian, the mother of Kevin - a boy who goes on a high school killing spree. Told through flashbacks after the event, the film focuses on Eva's reactions to the event, her feelings of guilt, and how she copes with life after it has all happened.

The movie is incredibly faithful to the book, and portrays the feelings of the characters remarkably well. The book focuses on feelings a lot, so this must have been pretty tough to do. I didn't really feel that the film added much to the book, but it's a powerful story, and I'm not sure much really needed to be added.

If you haven't read the book (or even if you have), this is really worth a watch. Tilda Swinton does an amazing job of making you understand exactly where Eva is coming from, and the entire movie is incredibly thought-provoking; although not exactly an uplifting experience.

Rating: 4.5 out of 5

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About Me

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I live in Bristol with my husband Dan (who I married in July 2007), my son Joe (born 2012) and daughter Jess (born 2015). I work at UWE (the University of the West of England) in Bristol as a Research and Open Access Librarian. I'm orginally from Exeter, so moving back to Bristol is a bit like coming home - especially as I studied for my undergraduate degree here (also at UWE). I love travelling and movies, although I get to do a lot less of both since the birth of our children. Although we have still managed to fit in holidays to the Isles of Scilly, Chamonix and a summer in California since Joe was born.