THREE STARS A cranky old man summons his estranged son to join him on a final road trip.
Jason Sudeikis, Ed Harris
The lines between TV and cinema are blurred even further by Netflix who’ve taken to producing movies for theatrical release (mostly, it seems, because you can’t win film awards without a spin through the local cinema). Not that this tight little indie drama is likely to win any awards - it maybe as slick as the Kodachrome packaging it wrestles its name from, but doesn’t bring anything new or fresh to the ‘my-dad’s-always-been-a-prick-but-I-love-him-anyway’ canon of father-son drama.
Here Jason Sudeikis gets to be eternally disappointed by Ed Harris as the curmudgeonly father who, near his deathbed, summons his estranged son for a road trip. As you do. Ed’s nurse, the always watchable Elizabeth Olsen, comes along for the ride and, no surprises, falls for Jason who, no surprise, finds a way to re-love his Dad.
There’s nothing at all bad about KODACHROME. It’s a well-produced, well-directed, well-written and well-acted film that hits all the right notes in all the right places. It’s even capable of inducing a moistening of the eye from all but the most hard-bitten cynics. What it fails to do is to say anything that hasn’t already been said by a hundred other father-son dramas that came before it.
If this is your first time around this particular block, KODACHROME develops nicely. That said, do yourself a favour and seek out NEBRASKA instead, Alexander Payne’s monochrome masterpiece that takes this trip (and a hundred like it) and turns the sub-genre on its head.