Review: Boys Are Back

I have everyone to spend time with, but no one to do nothing with.

What would you do if your spouse died leaving you with a child? What if you were living in Australia, but your family was in England? What if you were slightly irresponsible…bordering on negligent?

Clive Owen is an Englishman living in Australia. Owen’s wife dies after a brief but painful batttle with cancer. The Boys Are Back stars Clive Owen as an English sportswriter living in Australia with his second wife and son. After his wife’s death, it is clear that Owen who has not had much hands-on child raising responsibility must pick up the pieces of his family after his wife’s death.

Owen muddles through the funeral. Staggers through the first days after his wife’s death. Owen’s young son is unable to process the magnnitude of his mom’s death. With his constant questions of “Where’s Mummy?” he forces Owen to come to terms with life after his wife’s death.

Impulsively, Owen grabs his son and heads out of town on a roadtrip to no where. His wife’s mother expresses her worry that Owen should not be so hasty — surely Owen should stay put and deal with his wife’s death. Why does he need to leave so soon after hsi wife’s death? Shouldn’t he stay in the home to give his son a sense of stability? The film brings up so many questions. How would any of us deal with the death of a spouse…the passing of our partner in caegiving? I don’t have a cllue.

In spite of his mother-in-law’s protests, Owen and  son head on a road trip. All is well for a day or a week, the sense of time passing in the film is a little hazy. Soon the little boy starts protesting. At one point the boy starts kicking the back of the passenger seat. Owen does not know how to comfort his son. He stands beside the car adn paces. As he paces his wife appears with instructions that he needs to cuddle his son. Owen looks shell-shocked again.

The boy aged about 6 reminded me so much of my son. The determinedness of the boy jars Owen out of his grief. Home is where the boy and his dad need to be. Back to the house…Owen picks up life where he left off. Owen’s son heads back to school. Owen returns to work. Work, childcare, and housekeeeping seem overwhelming to Owen.

I have the utmost respect for single parent”s after I spend a night/weekend with the kids — alone. I don’t how, but single parent’s do it…and do it well.

Owen meanders through his days…muddling along…caring for his son…striking up a friendship with the mom of his son’s friend. Owen has another son in England. Just when Owen seems to have found a way to cope his tenage son asks to come to Australia. So now Owen needs to juggle work, and two kids, while coping wiith grief. I won’t tell anymore of the story…dont wan’t to be a spoiler.

The Boys Are Back is from Miramax Films and Buena Vista Home Entertainment. Exclusive bonus features include a behind-the-scenes photographic tour and a visit with the three special guys who lived the story.

Cast: Clive Owen, Laura Fraser, Emma Booth, George MacKay

Directed by Scott Hicks

The Boys Are Back is a 2009 Heartland Truly Moving Picture Award winner that won the hearts of critics everywhere including Peter Travers of Rolling Stone who calls it “A funny, touching and vital film…Clive Owen gives a heartfelt, award-caliber performance.”
DVD Bonus Features
The Boys Are Back
A Photographic Journey — A picture is worth a 1,000 words as director Scott Hicks takes us on a pictorial tour of the making of the film.
A Father and Two Sons, On Set — Simon Carr, whose memoir inspired the movie, and his real-life sons visit the set.
The Boys Are Back is priced at $29.99 on DVD.
Suggested retail price: $29.99
Feature run time: 104 minutes
Rating: Rated PG 13 – for some sexual language and thematic elements
Bonus materials not rated
Aspect ratio: 35:1
Sound: 5.1 Dolby Digital
Languages: English and Spanish

I was given a copy of the DVD for review.

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