**possible book spoilers are possible in comparing book to film**
Title: Labor Day
Director: Jason Reitman
Writer: Jason Reitman
Production Companies: Heyday Films, Indian Paintbrush, Mr. Mudd Productions, Paramount Pictures, Right of Way Films
Run Time: 111 Mins
Genre: Drama, Coming of Age, Crime Drama, Romantic Drama
Source: Allmovie, IMDB
Rating: 4 Stars
Jason Reitman’s Labor Day, adapted from the novel of the same name by Joyce Maynard, stars Kate Winslet as Adele, an emotionally shaky single mom to Henry (Gattlin Griffith). As the twosome shop for clothes Henry will wear when he begins seventh grade after the long Labor Day weekend, the boy is accosted by Frank (Josh Brolin), an escaped convict with a bleeding wound on his stomach. Frank manipulates Adele into letting him hide out at their house, and soon the seemingly scary man shows a strong domestic side and, in just a few days, develops a deep bond with both Adele and Frank. Co-starring Brooke Smith, J.K. Simmons, and Tobey Maguire, Labor Day screened at the 2013 Toronto International Film Festival.
First off, I couldn’t choose just ONE movie poster so I didn’t. I decided you give you both pictured above. I liked this movie a lot. If I had seen the movie without reading the book i would have still loved it. If i had never even heard of the book before watching this movie i would have liked this movie even still! I fell in love with Adele and Frank. I adored them and their little moments. They were subtle moments and never overt or over excited even. The movie fell in line with the book which made me enjoy the movie even more than i thought i would. Here are the few notes i took while watching the movie (believe me they are few):
- Frank seems so much scarier in the movie
- Dear Adele, I love how feisty and gutsy you just got
- The pie scene.
- I love that a scene with no words can mean so much [the scene on the stair case]
- flashbacks? did he have flashbacks in the book?
- Henry I knew what was coming and still wanted to strangle you
I just want to point out that this move for me was the definition of steady quiet love. I found the scenes between Frank and Adele to be sweet, not filled with meaningless chattered, wholly intimate and overflowing with love. It was depicted so well that I almost felt like i was intruding. If you read the book you know the little details not explained in the movie. You know Adele is withdrawn from society and beyond depressed. You know that Frank also had a tragic run in with “love” in Frank’s case it was the reason he landed in prison. The book was able to spell it all out for you word for word in a way the movie never will be able to but I will say that the movie did a pretty good job. I couldn’t help but sympathize with Frank even if i felt he was in the wrong for putting his hands on that awful woman whether she deserved it or not. I instantly hated the step mother and step siblings for Henry’s sake and pitied his father for feeling so awkward with his child. I envied the small piece of heaven Frank and Adele were able to create in just 3 days together. 3 days. I don’t even know if i like some foods or people in 3 days. I don’t believe at love at first sight but i don’t think that this was how the author or the movie people meant it either. These two lonely damaged souls reached out to each other and fused together to in the end become one wholesome soul in two separate bodies. I want to give Kate Winslet a round of applause, a standing ovation, for doing such a wonderful job. I mean she absolutely owned the roll and made it her own.
My favorite part of the movie: the pie scene. Hands down. The pie scene
It was loving. It was full of content. It was a learning experience and an intimate one at that. I don’t know this scene just spoke to me and i mean come one…you gotta love a man that can make grandma’s pie. He applied, life, love, trust, and patience to that pie. This was just a profound scene for me and my absolute favorite because it was soothing.
I wasn’t too fond of the bratty little girl they used to torment poor Henry and was super glad she only moved in for a tiny little kiss. As for the letter Henry left for his father…i still wanted to wallop him in the head for it even though i knew it was coming. I thought he rode a bike to his dad’s in the book but can’t clearly remember. That scene was completely on point. I felt as thought my head made it more chaotic while reading but you felt the angst and heartbreak when Frank walked out the front door and into a fresh pair of handcuffs. Everyone in this film did such a good job of expressing their emotions that it was crazy. I mean i get that im’ pretty much a huge sissy anyways but it was super easy to interpret the emotions thrown at you JUST from the acting alone. There wasn’t really anything about this movie that i would have changed. Not even Tobey Maguire and I’m not a huge fan of him. OH WAIT! The baby! It never really shows what happened to cause the baby to drown in the movie. It was such an easy explanation and a horrible coincidence but I wish that they would have given non readers the chance to know that Frank is a wonderful guy with some bad circumstances.
Honestly, this movie made me fall in love. It’s not a movie that i could watch over and over but i certainly would be able to enjoy it every time. I needed this movie. I am glad i finally watched it and i hope you watch it too if you are needing a warm loving romance.
One more of my favorite scenes: