Adapted by Tom Perrotta and Todd Field from Perrota’s novel of the same name, Little Children, is a tale of the lengths two people will go through to escape the soul numbing nature of marriage in suburbia. Sarah (Kate Winslet) is a well-educated writer who is disturbed by the way her life has turned out…married to a distant man who is obsessed with a girl on the internet, with a stalled career, and a child she can’t begin to understand. Brad (Patrick Wilson) is a law school grad who can’t seem to pass the bar. Married to a successful documentary film maker (Jennifer Connelly) and raising their young son, he is depressed and underwhelmed with his role in life. A chance meeting at the local park, and later at the municipal pool, leads to an affair. Sarah feels alive as she finds a reason to see herself as a desirable woman again. They use their kids as cover for their frequent meetings and eventual sexual relationship. Plans to run away together leads them to one fateful night. A second story (too good to call a subplot), of a pedophile (Jackie Earle Haley) who has returned to live with his mother (Phyllis Somerville) and faces the shaming of the town and the particular vehemence of disgruntled former police officer Larry (Noah Emmerich), is compelling for its rawness and refusal to make either man all good or all bad. A complex exploration of modern angst with incredible characters richly brought to life, especially by Winslet and Haley, this is a film that will stay with me a long time. A brilliant piece of modern cinema.
Little Children (2006)