Brevity, minimalism make “Rabbit Hole” powerful
Nicole Kidman and Aaron Eckhart flawlessly portray grieving parents looking to find ways of coping with loss in John Cameron Mitchellâ€™s â€śRabbit Hole,â€ť one of the most fantastic and moving films of the year.
Eight months after their four-year old son is tragically killed in a car crash, Becca (Kidman) and Howie (Eckhart) attempt to piece their life back together. They discuss plans such as selling their house or having another child, but they only hurt their marriage. Meanwhile, each parent tries to cope with the depression; Howie turns to pot and affairs with a woman from group therapy while Becca babies her pregnant sister and finds comfort in an unlikely companion.
Compared to other tragic loss films, the plot of â€śRabbit Holeâ€ť is straightforward and doesnâ€™t hold any unexpected twists. The uncomplicated plot makes focusing on the development and progression of the characters much easier and doesnâ€™t take away from the objective theme of coming to terms with loss.
The film itself is rather depressing, however. There are too many arguments to count and enough tears to upset the happiest of persons. The subtle attempts at humorâ€“â€“such as Beccaâ€™s reference to her sisterâ€™s job loss from Applebeeâ€™sâ€“â€“seem to darken the film even more, instead of lighten the mood. Despite the heaviness, the film is truly magnificent because it isnâ€™t just another sappy movie about moving on from grief. The simple plot holds attention while the actorâ€™s portrayal of loss is completely realistic.
Both Kidman and Eckhart give perfect performances in â€śRabbit Hole.â€ť Their depiction of childless parents gives the viewer an impeccable vision of the pain that comes with losing a child. They expose the vulnerable side of adults through their charactersâ€“â€“such as when they fightâ€“â€“while desperately trying to let go of the past and find some happiness in life.