Rabbit Hole ****

rabbit hole

“Rabbit Hole” is about two people who are grieving in very different ways.  After the unexpected death of their four year old son, a married couple are left to pick up the pieces.  One seems to be addicted to the recovery process, the other reaches out for comfort.  Both head down a path that will change their lives forever. 

Nicole Kidman and Aaron Eckhart are the married couple Howie and Becca.  Their son, Danny, was killed by a car after chasing his dog into the street.  This has left them both devastated with their marriage in shambles.  They attend group counselling together which seems like no help at all.

Becca finds solace in an unlikely friendship with the teenage who was driving the car in the accident.  He is a young comic book artist with nothing in common, but their interactions seem to help simmer the burning memories Becca has of her son. 

Howie on the other hand begins spending time with a woman from their grief group, Gabby.  It seems harmless at first as they smoke pot and play games but it grows complicated when the Gabby’s husband leaves her. 

How this film unfolds I doubt anyone will be able to predict.  The direction by John Cameron Mitchell is nearly perfect.  He puts together a movie that is sad, poignant and often very funny.  Not funny like movie funny but in that real life way when humorous moments sneak in to the grieving process.  Like when something funny happens at a funeral and the tension is broken and everyone is relieved to be able to laugh again. 

Nicole Kidman and Aaron Eckhart should not be forgotten come awards time.  Their work here makes it hard to imagine anybody else in either role.  They carry this movie and give us two of the most touching yet delicate performances of the year. 

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