Out Now On-Demand
Reservation Rd is the site of an accident. Ethan (Joaquin Phoenix), wife Grace (Jennifer Connelly) and their son Josh have pulled into a petrol station. In another car is divorced Dwight (Mark Ruffalo), driving with son Lucas. Dwight loses control, swerves and accidentally kills Josh. Happening so quick that Lucas doesn't notice, Dwight panics and drives away.
The incident has massive repercussions for both families, especially with the dads. One deals with heavy guilt, the other is unable to accept his son's death until his killer is found.
The best efforts of the performers cannot authenticate a plot that no longer feels inevitable. It feels contrived. And the audience stays at a remove instead of entering someone else’s nightmare.
Paints itself into a corner, creating a static situation in which everyone is either stymied or wracked by indecision, leaving the movie free for its two male leads to wallow in self-pity, remorse and bad behavior.
The latest from "Hotel Rwanda" director Terry George also piles on a "Nightmare on Elm Street" sequel's worth of unbelievable coincidences, rivaling Paul Haggis' "Crash" when it comes to people's lives intersecting in completely impossible ways. And despite some solid acting, the film is lacking in surprises. For all the suffering that these characters endure, there's very little payoff.
A dramatic situation that should be wrenching is mostly tedious in "Reservation Road." Tale of two New England fathers, one of whom kills the other's son in a hit-and-run auto accident and takes the entire picture to fess up to it, deals with painful, elemental emotions, to be sure. But the film has no special insight into the psyches of either man, or into the broader issues of how to process profound loss or admit culpability for a heinous act. As pic offers scant emotional rewards or catharsis, it's hard to imagine auds flocking to this downbeat drama in any significant numbers.
When your looking at your target and dont know it
Grief drives the father of a boy (Josh) to the law in his determination to find the killer.
The series of coincidences could be either compelling or inadequate, depending on your view of these things.