Their House Torn Asunder: Novice Director Todd Field's Disturbing Domestic Gem

By Ansen, David | Newsweek, December 3, 2001 | Go to article overview

Their House Torn Asunder: Novice Director Todd Field's Disturbing Domestic Gem


Ansen, David, Newsweek


Byline: David Ansen

From the opening moments of "In the Bedroom," you can sense that you are watching a director in total control of his movie. Two lovers are running across a field, a young man (Nick Stahl) and his older girlfriend (Marisa Tomei). They fall into the tall grass and kiss, the whip of the summer wind echoing their excitement. The compositions, the editing, the lighting, the sound, the music: everything seems meticulously considered, conjuring up a hushed intimacy that instantly sucks you in. In his powerful first feature, actor turned director Todd Field exhibits a mastery of his craft many filmmakers never acquire in a lifetime. He's deeply attuned to his material, and he takes us with him.

The young man's parents don't approve of the relationship. The Fowlers are an upper-middle-class Maine couple--the father (Tom Wilkinson) a doctor in town, the mother (Sissy Spacek) a specialist in Eastern European music, which she teaches to the high-school choir. Their college-age son shows signs of a bright future as an architect, and here he's fallen for a townie who's several years his senior, a married woman with two sons (she's recently left her angry, volatile husband). All they can see is trouble.

Something terrible does happen. (To reveal its specifics would be unfair to the movie.) The mood of summer indolence is shattered, and the focus of the story, which seemed to be about the young lovers, shifts to the parents. "In the Bedroom," which was adapted and greatly expanded by Rob Festinger and Field from a short story by the late Andre Dubus, shows us how these two decent people are transformed by tragedy. Under the stress, the fissures in what seemed like a good marriage gape open. …

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA 8, MLA 7, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Note: primary sources have slightly different requirements for citation. Please see these guidelines for more information.

Cited article

Their House Torn Asunder: Novice Director Todd Field's Disturbing Domestic Gem
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Help
Full screen
Items saved from this article
  • Highlights & Notes
  • Citations
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

matching results for page

    Questia reader help

    How to highlight and cite specific passages

    1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
    2. Click or tap the last word you want to select, and you’ll see everything in between get selected.
    3. You’ll then get a menu of options like creating a highlight or a citation from that passage of text.

    OK, got it!

    Cited passage

    Style
    Citations are available only to our active members.
    Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA 8, MLA 7, APA and Chicago citation styles.

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

    1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

    Cited passage

    Thanks for trying Questia!

    Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

    Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

    Buy instant access to save your work.

    Already a member? Log in now.

    Search by... Author
    Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

    Oops!

    An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.