I have to admit that it took me awhile trying to get myself to watch Lisa Cholodenko's "The Kids Are Alright."
Lesbian characters just don't interest me much, but the Oscar buzz behind this movie is strong, and I have to find out why. Now I know.
When Laser (Josh Hutcherson) and Joni (Mia Wasikowska, who recently played "Alice" in that Johnny Depp movie "Alice in Wonderland") decide to meet their biological father - Paul (Mark Ruffalo), the "sperm donor" to their lesbian parents Nic (Annette Benning) and Jules' (Julianne Moore) artificial insemination procedures, the weak threads in the relationship start showing. But Jules' further makes matters worse when she inadvertently sleeps with Paul, while she's supervising the landscaping of his backyard.
Family, in any form, is a sacred institution guarded by devotion, loyalty and the instinct of protecting each member from extraneous forces that threaten to harm any member. This is what's uplifting about this dramedy. That despite the imperfections within a relationship, the family will find the bind that pulls them together.
Strong performances from Julianne Moore and Annette Benning who both got Best Actress nominations from Golden Globe, while Ruffalo gets Best Supporting Actor nod from the Screen Actor's Guild. The Film also bagged the Teddy Award at the Berlin Film Fest. The bigger news is the Oscar nominations of Annette Benning (Lead Actress) and Mark Ruffalo (Supporting Actor). In the film, you wouldn't think of Benning as anything but a lesbian. Such a spot-on interpretation! And Ruffalo? He's always been a perfect "sperm donor" for me. LOL
Mark Ruffalo's first Oscar nomination as businessman Paul - the sperm donor who unwittingly sneaks himself within the corridors of an otherwise "normal" family mechanics.