Perhaps owing to his stage background, Mendes is the sort of movie director who tends to come up with a single, all-encompassing stylistic concept and then rarely deviates from it. That seemed like a shortcoming in his previous films, but in Revolutionary Road it translates into a stately, semi-detached, observational approach that makes it seem as if Frank and April Wheeler’s Good Housekeeping home were itself directing the movie. Which is only fitting for a film that, by the end, turns into a far more unsettling haunted-house story than The Amityville Horror. A friend who attended an early Revolutionary Road screening complained that it gave him the feeling of watching two John Cassavetes characters trapped in a Yasujiro Ozu film; but this, it seems to me, is precisely the point. Even after Frank and April’s climactic knockdown-dragout argument, chez Wheeler is markedly undisturbed — sitting there, biding its time, waiting to devour its next victims and their futile ambitions.
REVOLUTIONARY ROAD | Directed by SAM MENDES | Written by JUSTIN HAYTHE, based on the novel by RICHARD YATES | Produced by JOHN N. HART, SCOTT RUDIN, MENDES and BOBBY COHEN | Released by Paramount Vantage | Arclight Hollywood