Housebound and left to look after her ageing mother, Karen (Bening) daydreams ruefully of the daughter she gave up for adoption 35 years previously. Her daughter (Watts) is now a tough-edged lawyer nursing some long-buried wounds of her own. Lucy (Washington), meanwhile, yearns for a child of her own.
There's no shortage of talent in this ensemble drama about the bond between mothers and their children. Annette Bening is Karen, a sad, purse-lipped woman caring for her dying mother while regretting giving up her own child for adoption. Said child is Elizabeth (Naomi Watts), a selfish lawyer working for Paul (Samuel L. Jackson). Meanwhile, Lucy (Kerry Washington) and Joseph (David Ramsey) look to adopt. As all their lives interweave, there are poignant and humorous moments, but dramatic events are skipped over quickly with little explanation and new characters are introduced without any benefit to the story. Still, it’s beautifully performed — and you don’t get to see Naomi Watts straddling Samuel L. Jackson every day.
Solid ensemble drama with too many threads to do justice too. Bening doesn't get the opportunity to hit The Kids Are Alright's highs.