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We Need to Talk About Kevin

Updated on February 4, 2016

For my first review, the British independent film “We need to talk about Kevin” made in 2011. This movie, though I’ve never heard of it received a rating of 7.5/10 on IMDB.com and 3 stars on Netflix (both honorable enough ratings). I happened upon it while looking for a ‘B’ horror. How I stumbled on Kevin instead… I still don’t remember, but this story, starring Tilda Swinton, John C. Reilly and Ezra Miller, though dark as all hell, is a drama- a drama focusing a great deal on regret.

The tragic irony of the story is that the regret is coming from the character that the viewer learns should probably feel it the least. The story is seen through the flash back memories of Eva Khatchadourian (Tilda Swinton) and opens with her dreaming of a memory of her covered in red goo. This excellent symbolism for the blood that she blames herself for, but what is a little disappointing is that the literal memory, what the goo really is, what she was doing, is glazed over.

The viewer learns that Eva is very interested in traveling, and the dream memory was most likely a festival in a foreign country that she may have participated in during a vacation on her honeymoon with her husband. More attention to this memory would have been good to see because it would add poetic symmetry to the sad story. The full story of Kevin is told, along with how the disagreements over him slowly killed the marriage of the Khatchdouians’, but we don’t really see where it started. The point of this story is knowing the whole time how it ends; knowing how it started would, without a doubt tighten the wrench clamping down your heart, but it would also make it more whole and lend even greater sympathy for Eva.

The whole movie, through the flashback memories, we see how the relationship between Eve and Kevin grew more tragic year after year. The audience then wonders along with Eve of the present if it was her fault Kevin turned out the way he did, or was he just born with the propensity for evil? At the end we can only hope that Kevin finally realizes who was really there for him his whole life. As for Eve, we hope that she will forgive herself for all of the things she blames herself for.

“We Need to Talk About Kevin” I will say is a good watch… when you need to see someone who has a life worse than your own. It is mostly slow-moving and painful, but you can trust it to quietly collect its things and leave the next morning, without any awkward goodbyes. It is very clear and leaves you with nothing to wonder about. Now, alone in your bedroom, you may mutter, “Huh, that was sad,” to yourself then put it out of your mind while turning off the credits.

2.5/5 Random Rating: an interesting watch if you’re able to sit though the sadness; well acted.

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