Viewing your Watchlist and recommended content requires Javascript

  • 15
  • Drama
  • 2010

The Kids Are All Right

Film4 The Kids Are All Right


Two children born by artificial insemination want to meet their biological father in this comedy drama starring Annette Bening, Julianne Moore and Mark Ruffalo


If Oscars were given for most convincing on-screen couple, Annette Bening and Julianne Moore would be a shoe-in here as Nic and Jules, a married couple whose children, conceived via artificial insemination, decide in their late teens that they'd like to meet the man from whose seed they sprang. Bening and Moore nail the rhythms, intonations and body language of long-term lovers, comfortable with each other and far from jaded but also, naturally, no longer in the first flush of romance.

Sailing into their cosy marriage, Mark Ruffalo as the biological dad is charming without being too sleazy, and his aura of irresponsibility is finely judged; he's never an annoying manchild, but equally it's easy to see why his grubby-fingernailed laissez faire style has the effect it does on this picture-perfect family. The kids themselves are, as promised, all right, with Mia Wasikowska more effective than she was allowed to be in the woeful 2010 Alice In Wonderland, but Josh Hutcherson slightly in danger of being upstaged by his foul-mouthed toxic best friend (Eddie Hassell).

The Kids Are All Right is mostly quite cosy, comfortable stuff, with the studio responsible, Focus Features, close to becoming an American version of the UK's own Working Title, home of Notting Hill and Bridget Jones's Diary. The Kids Are All Right is not quite as broad as those films, but don't let the right-on characters fool you: this is a traditional comedy about the tensions between generations and within marriages, and is finally even rather conservative in its resolution.

Cast & Connections

  • Actor: Mark Ruffalo, Josh Hutcherson, Julianne Moore, Mia Wasikowska, Annette Bening
  • Director: Lisa Cholodenko
  • Screen Writer: Lisa Cholodenko, Stuart Blumberg
  • Producer: Jeffrey Levy-Hinte, Gary Gilbert, Daniela Lundberg Taplin, Celine Rattray
  • Photographer: Igor Jadue-Lillo

In a nutshell

Deft performances and the script's sure ear for dialogue distinguish a comedy-drama that could have so easily got bogged down in superficial melodrama. Instead, it's a light, lovingly handled tale about the difficulties of staying in love.

by Catherine Bray

Latest from Film4...

  • Film4

    The Salt Of The Earth

    Brazilian documentary about the life of visionary photographer Sebastião Salgado, directed by Wim Wenders and Sebastião's son Juliano Ribeiro Salgado.

    On Film4: 2 Nov 1:00AM

  • Film4

    Master Of The World

    Fun sci-fi fantasy for big kids and small, adapted from the Jules Verne story of the same name.

    On Film4: 30 Oct 3:15PM

  • Film4

    The Guest on Film4

    Dan Stevens and Maika Monroe star in violent thriller The Guest, playing for the first time on Film4.

  • Film4

    Black Cinema Season on Film4

    To tie-in with the launch of the BFIs Black Star season, Film4 presents a celebration of black filmmaking talent both in front of and behind the camera.

  • Channel 4 Blog

    TIFF 2016: Top Ten Editor Michael Leader runs through ten standouts from the Toronto International Film Festival...   The Oath I'd already seen three of the four Film4-backed films screening in Toronto (inc

  • Channel 4 Blog

    Baltasar Kormakur on The Oath

    As his Film4-backed Icelandic thriller The Oath premieres in Toronto, director/writer/actor Baltasar Kormakur speaks with editor Michael Leader about making films in Hollywood, returning to

Register with

Personalise your Film4 experience

  • Set film reminders
  • Build your watchlist
  • Get film suggestions

or Register