In The Bedroom

Sissy Spacek, Tom Wilkinson, Marisa Tomei.
Directed by Todd Field.
Running Time: 130 mins
Rated: MA 15+
There is nothing like an award to help fill a theatre. This film has been out for three weeks, but since Sissy Spacek beat our Nicole and our Naomi for Best Actress at the Golden Globe Awards, In the Bedroom has been doing a roaring trade.

Don't be put off by the title. This is not an erotic film. The title has three meanings. The first is the name of the inner part of a fisherman's cage where lobsters are trapped. The second is the room in which couples have to confront each other with lies or the truth. The third is how the decisions taken in a bedroom have ramifications well beyond it.

Frank Fowler (Nick Stahl) is the only son of Matt and Ruth (Wilkinson and Spacek). He is about to go to an Ivy League University. Over the summer he gets involved with Natalie (Tomei), a soon-to-be-divorced mother of two. Natalie's husband resents Frank and takes his revenge on him. Matt and Ruth's world becomes filled with recriminations and revenge.

This is a surprisingly film. It starts out as a domestic drama and ends up a thriller. There are several shocking and violent scenes here that will offend some viewers. The acting is first-rate from all the principal players with Sissy Spacek's portrayal of a mother's grief painful to watch.

She deserved her award.

Slowly and deliberately In the bedroom unravels the complexity of human relationships. It's about the end result of making one poor moral choice after another and keeping silent in the bedroom, or anywhere else.

Richard Leonard SJ

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