After Titanic: Leonardo DiCaprio as Frank Wheeler and Kate Winslet as April Wheeler in Sam Mendes' drama "Revolutionary Road", which opens in the U.S. and Canada beginning on December 25 and expanding on January 2.  (Photo: Paramount Vantage)

Together Eleven Years Later, And They're Racing Against Time And Convention Once Again

By Omar P.L. Moore/The Popcorn Reel
December 9, 2008

It seemed like just yesterday that Kate Winslet and Leonardo DiCaprio clung to each other for dear life on the big screen in their roles in James Cameron's multi-Oscar-winning "Titanic" back in 1997.  Then, they were runaways in love, betraying conventions in the ways that only love can.  She was rich.  He was poor.  She was married.  He had no one.  She was Rose.  He was Jack.

And today, together, they're back.

The new film "Revolutionary Road" reunites Ms. Winslet, who was nominated for a lead actress Oscar for "Titanic", with Mr. DiCaprio, who was not nominated for "Titanic", and was reported to be none-too-pleased about it.  In the intervening eleven years since the release of what would be the mega-hit "Titanic" a lot has happened to both actors -- namely Oscar nominations -- and Ms. Winslet has given birth to her first child and married "Revolutionary Road" director and Oscar winner Sam Mendes, who directed "American Beauty" in 2000. 

In Mr. Mendes' new film, based upon the namesake novel by Richard Yates, convention is shattered again in a quiet suburban neighborhood in America in the 1950's, as married couple Frank (Mr. DiCaprio) and April (Ms. Winslet) have grand ideas of escaping their staid, homogeneous lives in an equally bland American by running off to Paris together with their two small children.  But as in "Titanic", both face the pressures that everyday American workaday life can bring.  Their marriage is put to the test at several moments that are sometimes difficult to watch, and through it all their performances, in particular Ms. Winslet's, are so very good.

"Revolutionary Road" was supposed to be released late last year but the date was pushed back to open at the end of this year.  Besides, there was also a film released in the U.S. and Canada last year entitled "Reservation Road" -- perhaps a little too similar-sounding for many. 

There are distinct differences however, between "Reservation Road", directed by Terry George, and Mr. Mendes' film, which broils with tension and the yearning to be (and breathe) free.  And when they're together on the big screen, there's an effortless chemistry between Kate Winslet and Leonardo DiCaprio in "Revolutionary Road".  They act like real marital spouses, and for some of those real-life couples that means the inevitable: love, hate, ups, downs, indiscretions and a war for the heart. 

"Revolutionary Road" opens in the U.S. and Canada on December 25, expanding across both countries on January 2, 2009.  The film also stars Oscar winner Kathy Bates, Michael Shannon, Kathryn Hahn and David Harbour.

Copyright The Popcorn Reel.  2008.  All Rights Reserved.


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