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Little Children 2006 ****


Writer/director Todd Field followed up In The Bedroom with an equally dark but just as compelling drama, featuring Kate Winslet as Massachusetts mother Sarah who embarks on clandestine afternoon meetings with Brad (Patrick Wilson). Their initially chaste meetings, while their children play at a local park, gives way to a torrid romance, despite their family ties, and engenders a secret that affects the way they see the community around them. That disaffection becomes important as Brad’s friend Larry is suspicious of local outcast Ronnie (Jackie Earle Haley), who lives with his mother and has a complex set of mental health issues relation to women and young girls in particular. How the community treat Ronnie becomes mixed up with Sarah and Brad’s covert affair, and final few scenes of Little Children are intense and powerful as deception leads to consequences. Little Children is melodramatic at times, but the 134 minute length is justified by the eloquent way that Field draws out the mores of the suburban community, and engenders sympathy for Sarah and Brad and their fight against the common denominator of loveless marriages. A woman’s picture in the old style, Little Children is an accomplished adult drama.


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  1. The only thing I found dumb in this movie is the fact that we’re supposed to believe that one of the most beautiful women in the world is somehow a stale, old, homely girl. Other than that I do like this film (and Kate Winslet) a whole lot.

    • Agreed; it’s like Deep Blue Sea where Rachel Weisz finds that there’s only two men in London interested in her. You’d think she could meet someone just by popping out to shops, but I guess that in films, even the mousey people are beautiful.

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