Revolutionary Road reunites Titanic co-stars Kate Winslet and Leonardo DiCaprio after more than ten years. But neither of these performers have let fame go to their heads, always managing to disappear into whatever characters they may be playing.
And this may just have been the perfect movie to show off their extraordinary acting talent with its lengthy sections of dialogue and opportunities to explode with portrayals of deep human emotion. Under the direction of Winslet's husband Sam Mendes, Revolutionary Road is an expertly executed drama about suburban life and a marriage in desperate crisis.
Based on the novel by Richard Yates, Revolutionary Road tells the story of a young couple living in suburban Connecticut during the 1950s. It deals with their personal problems of love, work, family life, and raising their two children.
Ever since the match-up of Winslet and DiCaprio in 1997's Titanic, film fans everywhere have been yearning to see the two on screen again. It's kind of strange that it hasn't happened in some form until now since it's evident by this film that the chemistry they had in Titanic wasn't a fluke. They are perfect for the roles of April and Frank Wheeler, two young people in love who all too quickly find themselves living in one of a row of almost identical houses in suburbia, basically being "just like everyone else." This is one of the central issues of the film: both Frank and April, in their own unique and opposite ways, feel trapped in this resigned life. "Who made these rules, anyway?" spouts April, desperately wanting something different than what they have (she comes up with the idea of moving to Paris). This is wholly human stuff, dealing with problems that occur in real life instead of the superficiality often seen in movies today.
What's most fascinating about the film is its meticulous dissection of a seemingly perfect marriage — they have two great kids yet April at one point lets it slip she feels they are a burden of sorts to her; the couple look like they're perfect for one another and yet they conflict in many different ways. The film teeters on the edge of emotional explosion almost constantly as issues and problems bubble their way to the surface. In the scenes of heated arguments, of which there are a few, Winslet and DiCaprio are simply stunning. It takes a special kind of acting talent to make characters and scenes like this believable, and in this regard Revolutionary Road is utterly convincing.