This emotionally challenging family dramedy which deals with death, grief and alternative lifestyles gives cinema a profound voice which is usually overlooked.
After living a self-sufficient and isolated life in the wilderness for a decade, Ben (Viggo Mortensen) and his six children reconnect with the modern world to attend the funeral of their loving wife and mother.
Ben faces fierce scrutiny from relations who question the validity of his children’s unorthodox upbringing and their unpreparedness for the real world, which ultimately has he and his children reassess their nonconformist ideologies.
This sweet and well intentioned film is emotionally draining at times, interspersed with humour which originates from the children’s eccentric behaviour and their social awkwardness.
The effects of isolated lifestyles are explored and audiences will ponder whether a father whose ‘distorted life choices’ that don’t conform to the standards should have him labelled as a misfit or more importantly as a concerned parent misunderstood by conventional society. (MMo)