DEMOLITION Review – Powerful, Moving, Brilliant

AddThis Social Bookmark Button

DEMOLITION, from FOX Searchlight Pictures, brings to the screen the story of inarticulate emotion of grief and the many ways grief manifest with the lives of those who, by design are supposed to have it all together.

Starring Jake Gyllenhaal, Chris Cooper, Naomi Watts and newcomer Judah Lewis. DEMOLITION, also stars Debra Monk, Malachy Cleary and C.J. Wilson, was directed by Jean-Marc Vallee and written by Bryan Sipe.

DEMOLITION, begins in a non-assuming series of the mundane corporate suburban life with voice over by Gyllenhaal, who is a successful Wall Street financial analyst deal maker, Davis. He lives perennially in the zone of life headphone listening to the rhythm of his own music while everyone goes on around him, his wife continues with meaningful conversation to which when filtered through the mental music are meant with the proper response to stop any further action.

A master at this non-conversation conversation by this time, Gyllenhaal/Davis has the routine of a man who married up, the boss’ daughter Julia, played by Heather Lind, who is loved, treasured by her parents Chris Cooper (American Beauty), and Polly Draper.

Driving out to the Hamptons for the weekend, the two, Julia and Davis, are having together time translated, using the four hours or so drive to attempt normalcy, when they are broadsided in a unexpected, stunning, terrifying moment. Life is suddenly severely altered.

T-boned on the driver’s side, the next scenes are in the Emergency Room when Julia’s Dad, Phil played by Chris Copper is explaining she’s dead.

Obviously this is the break in the film, when tragedy takes over and the manifestation of grief, which in reality is an inarticulate emotion as every person, which is also how the script is written, reacts differently.

Handling, going through the motions, dealing, following through on the expectations and business of death become a crux as the relationship between Davis and Phil deteriorates over the course of the film.

The crash and trauma sends Davis to a place he has never been. Played with touches of humor, Davis becomes the conductor of the skewed symphony in his mind that has jumped some notes.

Attempting to purchase M&M’s from the hospital vending machine, the candy gets stuck, and like everyone we all attempt to manage the situation with rocking, tilting, hitting hoping the vibration will loosen our treasure. Well it doesn’t here and to Davis who has just been told his wife is dead and his life shattered, losing the money in the vending machine was the straw that broke the camel’s back.

At this point Naomi Watts who plays Karen, the customer service representative at the vending company and newcomer Judah Lewis, who plays her son Chris, add the unknown variables to the very structured lifestyle of Wall Street executive.

Davis embarks on a letter writing campaign attempting to receive a reimbursement for his loss. The vending company is typical at first, and then as Davis works through his life, issues the letters become more intimate and are read by Karen.

The second act of DEMOLITION centers on the trio, Davis, Karen and Chris as Davis has reached out essentially to all the wrong people, bringing in expendable additions to his life to help him through, without calculation or knowledge that his new found friendships are in reality seasonal.

Life, of course, is not that simple and genuine friendships develop as Davis explains to these outsiders the truth, which he is unable to articulate to those who expected him to tow the company and family line even and especially in the most difficult times.

Throughout all this he is missing appointments, heading to the office in his new found freedom clothes, at all the wrong times and most oddly, attempting to find a fix for everything.

The last home repair Julia asked him to handle before her death, the refrigerator leak, became the catalyst and soon he was trying to fix everything: the door squeaks, he wants to repair it; the neighbor is tearing down his house, he wants to be a part of it; soon his experiments are resulting in larger and larger demolition projects.

Naomi Watts comes in as a lifeline to Davis’ trauma as she struggles with her son, played brilliantly, by Lewis and his life choices. At some point Chris/Lewis is a typical teen and other times he is the product of all the shock wave noise that teens are hit with, then other times coming to grips with himself and of course, as a teen hormone rage shows up and without a real father or father figure Davis become a surrogate as confident, friend, and encourager.

Jean-Marc Vallee’s direction is stunning. He is able to weave this deeply unfair and tragic events into a story that is presented with clarity so the unclear, the muddled, the mind warp that overtakes some in those moments is presented with both humor and heartbreak.

The cast of DEMOLITION, across the board from supporting players, Debra Monk and Heather Lind to newcomer Judah Lewis, who honestly is a scene stealer, brings the stellar points of light even on the fringe or cameos.

DEMOLITION drills down propelling you into this emotional warp zone, where time, words, situations are unbalanced as the nerve endings have been pulled from the right connecting sources leaving the participants to find the way back without direction.

Sudden realization of truth and lies, shock, violence and terror wakes everyone up. Life moves ahead, and sometimes the deck is dealt from the bottom, unfair as it is it happens, and causes a pause. Finally, everyone pushes the play button again and oddly life picks up, not quite where it left off, but picks up again.

DEMOLITION comes full circle and delivers an ending filled with hope and as impressive, compelling, moving and powerful as the beginning.

Judah Lewis hold his own against powerhouse talent Jake Gyllenhaal and Naomi Watts and is brilliant giving a tour de force performance.

DEMOLITION opens April 8, 2016 in select cities and expands within weeks.

Haute Tease

  • Tribute and Damage - Have We Lost Sight of the Lessons of History

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    The end of the celebrations of the centenary of the First World War have passed and does not leave without questioning the relations, the interactions, of the French to History. And if they had simply changed?

  • X-Men: First Class - First Class Fun!

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    X-MEN: FIRST CLASS, a high action, entertaining sci-fi flick from Twentieth Century Fox, Marvel Entertainment and Dune Entertainment, recently screened for members of the press on the FOX STUDIO lot in Century City, CA.

  • The Weatherman Umbrella Review - Attractive, Sturdy, The Perfect Weather Accessory

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    As seasons change each day is a proverbial weather hazard and with events from red carpets to weddings to sunny sport Saturdays, weather instability from rain to sun to snow can turn the best days into a disaster.

  • Wilmington, North Carolina, Begins the Slow Process of Recovery

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    Tropical Storm Florence, who came ashore as a Category 1, left in its wake unprecedented rainfall, catastrophic flooding, extensive uprooted trees, widespread power outages, alarming toxic spillage, and the shocking deaths of millions of farm raised animals.

  • Private Telluride Mountain Estate Expected To Sell for $18 Million At Auction

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    A private mountain estate centrally located in the heart of world-renowned ski town Telluride will sell to the highest bidder next month as part of Concierge Auctions' "Winter Portfolio" auction sale in New York City.

  • Men’s Gift Guide - Man Crates Redefines Awesome With Specialty Gifts

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    Man Crates, despite its gender specific reference, brings an innovated approach to gift giving and with ideas that range from the unusual to the wide eyed wow, the mail order company delivers crates of fun guaranteed to surprise.

  • Beltway Insider: Obama/ISIS/Syria/Turkey Update; Election 2016; Brie Larson

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    President Obama, speaking at the State Department, admitted his original estimation of the Islamic State was incorrect and even with a global coalition a greater enemy than previously thought, and as ISIS remains entrenched, he remains confident they will be destroyed.

  • Cannes Film Festival to Pay Tribute to Robert De Niro with a Hands of Stone Special Screening

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    Hands of Stone, from The Weinstein Company, presents Robert De Niro in a role that already has insiders buzzing about the possibility of a golden season for one of the most revered and legendary actors in film history.  

  • Weddings & Celebrations: Hall and Walt Wines, of Napa Valley, Offer Personalized Vino Packages

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    The luxury vineyards of Hall and Walt Wines in Napa Valley are now offering customized winery packages for off-site weddings and celebrations bringing its delicious, world renowned wine, to your table complimenting that very special day.

  • 70 ISIS Associates Named Across 21 States

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    Sky News, the British News Agency, has announced a former Islamic State Fighter has leaked tens of thousands of documents revealing the names and global locations of at least 22,000 recruited members of the terrorist organization.

  • Bob Iger Open to Re-Upping at Walt Disney

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    Bob Iger, the Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of the Walt Disney Company, let the proverbial cat out of the bag explaining in ever so veiled language his strategic intent to retain his current position for at least two more years.

  • Money News: DOW, US Markets Close Up; London, Asian Markets Down

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    The DOW Jones Industrial Average, desperately clinging to the bull market, maintained nearly all the previous week gains, barely closing up with double digit gains to, regain the standing of the previous week and year profits.

  • Une Fleur Sans Racine

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    Que restera-t-il du mouvement des Gilets Jaunes ? Nul ne saurait le dire mais l'actuel étiolement du mouvement trouve ses origines dans l'absence de structuration politique à même d'assurer sa pérennité.  

  • Peshawar Death Toll Rises; World Leaders Express Outrage

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    The death toll continues to rise in the Taliban lead assault on the Peshawar Army Public School that left 126 students, from first through tenth grade, confirmed dead and another 124 injured, as the scene remains an active hostage situation.

  • Playboy Mansion Sells to Neighbor; Allows Bunny Patriarch Lifetime Living

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    Hugh Hefner sold his Holmby Hills Mansion for a cool $100Million, half of the original listing price, to his neighbor, Daren Metropoulos, the owner of Hostess Snack Foods. The Playboy Enterprises founder will live out his days dolling out $1M annually for expenses.


Login Form