Top positive review
BETTER THAN EXPECTED
Reviewed in the United States on January 2, 2018
Lacy Chabert plays a mom with two young boys whose husband has died recently after a long illness; Warren Christie plays a husband who suddenly lost his wife and mother of their three children: an older girl ( 12?), and two boys, all of whom from both families go the same private religious school. This point is very important because the church pastor and members create a nexus of support and sometimes dictative opinion toward the couple.
Though she is still grieving herself, she observes that the daddy is having an even tougher time of it, overwhelmed by
laundry, shopping, and cleaning, all tasks done by his former wife. She reaches out just by a little supportive conversation from time to time.
Later, one of them suggests a cooperative dinner together, and, even with 5 children, it goes very well. Gradually, and in my opinion, very respectfully to themselves, the grieving process,and to their children, they do more, and have more fun, and seem to really all like each other.
You can guess how this ends happily, but I liked how it seemed to progress with everyone's needs and cares in mind, that is, slowly, without rushing. By the time the end came, you have a lot of trust that everyone is on board.
There were only two scenes that were seared into my memory, one with great sympathy and empathy, and the other
with anger and great irritation. The first was when Daddy was really having difficulty coping, and things were going
badly at breakfast. The oldest son (younger than sis), was standing barefoot in his pajamas on the cold kitchen floor,
so upset and angry, that he just said loudly, and over and over "I WANT MY MOM BACK! I WANT MY MOM BACK!"
He wasn't throwing anything or being aggressive, but you could see he was just really emotionally overwhelmed,
the situation around him was loud and chaotic, and he KNEW what he needed!!! I cried at that point because I, too have lost someone unexpectedly, and surprised myself at how much anger there was and that the ONLY thing that would mend this mess and make things right again, was if they were HERE! NOW!
The other thing happened about a year later in the story. The couple, including all accompaniments, were doing fine
even on a joint vacation, when a so called friend, calls the mom aside, telling her that certain parishioners were a little alarmed at the "speed" at which their friendship/dateship was progressing, and what if it doesn't work out? wouldn't the kids be upset, blah blah gossip gossip. My reaction did NOT see this as kindness,or compassion, but as
none their business, and merely gossip to fill in the uninvited and dissatisfied curiosity they were generating, a good waste of energy. If I were a Christian and knew Jesus' sayings better, or much more of the Bible, probably an appropriate story or saying could be found, but I have to trust the heart and gut given me.
Therefore, this was not an unrealistic story, but on the contrary, quite as I have seen and experienced going through the grieving process. This film also gives me insight in being around people who have or are experiencing a similar
process, or dating someone similar.