Thursday, December 2, 2010

Welcome to the Rileys, Indecisive

Let me start out by saying that I have never seen Kristen Stewart in a role like she plays inWelcome to the Rileys. Her character here is not the teen female heartthrob from the Twilight saga, and that's a good thing. In fact, it's the main reason to see her new film in the first place. That said, the supporting cast isn't too shabby also with the likes of James Gandolfini and Melissa Leo.

The plot opens with an introduction to a once happily married couple Doug (Gandolfini) and Lois Riley (Leo) who have not been able to recover from an accident that took their teenage daughter eight years prior. Bored with his business and not being able to cope with his wife suffering from agoraphobia caused by the loss, he takes off for a business trip to New Orleans. One night after a meeting he wanders into a strip bar and meets Mallory (Stewart) a 17-year-old runaway who has been wasting her life pole dancing and doing tricks. Haunted by the loss of his daughter, Doug decides to stay on in New Orleans with the girl to see if he can help her straighten out her life.

Stewart truly gets into her role as the 'lost' hooker who can't seem to get a grip on how society really works. Her idea of making money is what she can find in her g-string at the end of the night. Gandolfini does a great job in the role of the guardian and father he was not able to be with his own daughter, sometimes maybe overly protective. Melissa Leo's challenge however, does not make the grade loosing credibility between her home in Indiana and her trip to New Orleans.

Now, although the story is well acted and directed, the writer can't seem to find a good resolve. I mention this because there may not be a solution at all. I found myself digging in my own mind on how the film could have ended short of leaving everything the way it was before Doug's intervention. Actually the film is really a chance to see Kristen Stewart show some real acting for a change.

Welcome to the Rileys is rated R for strong sexual content, brief drug use and pervasive language involving a teenager. Like I said Kristen Stewart as you have never seen her before (The Runaways excepted).

FINAL ANALYSIS: Some great acting that's wasted on a weak storyline.

Sent from my BlackBerry® on the MetroPCS Network

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