I thought the performances were very good, but I disagree with all the buzz Kidman is getting for her role as a grieving mother. Of course, I didn’t think Annette Bening deserved the Golden Globe for Best Performance by an Actress in a Motion Picture – Musical or Comedy for The Kids Are All Right either, so what do I know?
At any rate, Rabbit Hole allows us a glimpse into one couples lives as they deal with the loss of their four year old son, who runs into the street after the family dog and is hit by a car.
The couple is grieving in their own way and at their own pace and it almost destroys their marriage.
Horrific to think about, but always up for a good mental exercise, Rabbit Hole prompted some interesting and insightful discussion for our car ride home, another sign of a good movie.
Could our marriage survive the loss of a child? Hard to say. We agreed that it would require the utmost patience and understanding that either of us could muster and that it would most definitely be the hardest thing that we would ever have to go through. A parent should never have to bury a child. Every time you looked at one another you would have a living reminder. It’s a difficult scenario to imagine.
But that’s not the part that has stuck with me.
There is moment when Becca (Kidman) finally lets go of some of her pent up emotional control, breaks down and asks her mother, Nat (played brilliantly by Dianne Weist), who has also suffered the loss of a child, about her pain and the weight of it. The dialogue is breathtaking and the message is haunting:
Becca: Does it ever go away?
Nat: No, I don’t think it does. Not for me, it hasn’t – has gone on for eleven years. But it changes though.
Nat: I don’t know… the weight of it, I guess. At some point, it becomes bearable. It turns into something that you can crawl out from under and… carry around like a brick in your pocket. And you… you even forget it, for a while. But then you reach in for whatever reason and – there it is. Oh right, that. Which could be aweful – not all the time. It’s kinda…
Nat: not that you’d like it exactly, but it’s what you’ve got instead of your son. So, you carry it around. And uh… it doesn’t go away. Which is…
Becca: Which is what?
Nat: Fine, actually.
I thought that this was such a beautiful way to describe grief and loss and where it goes after time. I am still learning to live with the passing of my parents. It’s been almost three and a half years. I know I will remember these words from Rabbit Hole and I look forward to finding my “fine”, my peace some day.