Mixed or average reviews - based on 29 Critics What's this?

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Generally favorable reviews- based on 14 Ratings

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  • Starring: , ,
  • Summary: Based on the critically acclaimed novel of the same name by John Burnham Schwartz, this is a compelling new dramatic thriller. A tale of anger, revenge, and great courage, the film follows two fathers as their families and lives converge. On a warm September evening, college professor Ethan Learner, his wife Grace, and their daughter Emma are attending a recital. Their 10-year-old son Josh is playing cello--beautifully, as usual. His younger sister looks up to him, and his parents are proud of their son. On the way home, they all stop at a gas station on Reservation Road. There, in one terrible instant, Josh is taken from them forever. On a warm September evening, law associate Dwight Arno and his 11-year-old son Lucas are attending a baseball game. Their favorite team, the Red Sox, is playing, and hopefully heading for the World Series. Dwight cherishes his time spent with Lucas. Driving his son back to his ex-wife, Lucas' mother Ruth Wheldon, Dwight heads toward his fateful encounter at Reservation Road. The accident happens so fast that Lucas is all but unaware, whereas Ethan--the only witness--is all too aware when a panicked Dwight speeds away. The police are called, and an investigation begins. Haunted by the tragedy, both fathers react in unexpected ways, as do Grace and Emma. As a reckoning looms, the two fathers are forced to make the hardest choices of their lives. (Focus Features) Expand
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 9 out of 29
  2. Negative: 4 out of 29
  1. There's a kind of tough beauty to this deft, satisfying thriller.
  2. Reviewed by: Josh Rosenblatt
    Connelly, in particular, soars as the nail-biting mother trying desperately to put on a brave face and keep her family together, while Ruffalo and Phoenix, two of Hollywood’s best brooders, are excellent as wounded young fathers.
  3. 63
    It's hard to watch two fine actors working themselves into a lather for so little reward.
  4. Reviewed by: Dana Stevens
    The kind of movie that moves you to tears even as you resent the manipulative mechanics of the story.
  5. The result is that, rather than tragedy, this unfolds like a plodding morality tale in which Wrath and Cowardice play out their respective parts.
  6. Paints itself into a corner, creating a static situation in which everyone is either stymied or wracked by indecision, leaving the movie free for its two male leads to wallow in self-pity, remorse and bad behavior.
  7. A deadly earnest and deadly dull psychological thriller.

See all 29 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 5 out of 7
  2. Negative: 1 out of 7
  1. Dec 14, 2010
    The only criterium I have for liking or not liking a movie is: do I keep watching ? This one, I definitely did keep watching. The acting is superb, the unfolding drama and conflict are intense. I wonder why these movies never really make it to the big screen... Expand

See all 7 User Reviews