DVD review | The Descendants – George Clooney finds trouble in paradise and tragicomic gold

A poignant, funny, warm-hearted tragicomedy set in Hawaii, The Descendants sees George Clooney deliver one of the finest performances of his career.

Clooney’s Matt King is a befuddled middle-aged man in crisis. A lawyer living in Hawaii, he goes into a tailspin when a waterskiing accident leaves his wife in a coma and he discovers she was having an extra-marital affair.  Setting off with his two hard-to-handle daughters to confront his wife’s lover, Matt falls prey to jealousy, pettiness and anger but remains a fundamentally decent man. And it’s his flaws – as well as Clooney’s willingness to strip himself of any vestiges of movie-star glamour – that make the character appealing and easily identifiable. The resultant mix of slapstick and pathos is exquisitely judged but the viewer needs to be patient for the film to work its magic. The pace is measured, the tempo low-key. Adjust to that rhythm, though, and you’ll be rewarded by as wry and perceptive view of the human comedy.

Released on DVD & Blu-ray on Monday 21st May by 20th Century Fox Home Entertainment.


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