Sunday, January 8, 2012

Divorce and Custody Movie Review - Secret Window

Today I review Secret Window from my collection of divorce, child custody and child support related movies.

Secret Window [2004] - Based on the novella by Stephen King; directed by David Koepp. Johnny Depp stars as Mort Rainey a mentally disturbed novelist who lives in seclusion following the estrangement from his wife, played by Maria Bello, who has become involved with a new suitor played by Timothy Hutton.

When Mort is confronted by a man claiming rightful ownership of a story published under Mort's name a cat and mouse game ensues. Mort is tormented by the man, played by John Turturro, who Mort comes to believe has been hired by Hutton. Intense scenes of discord between Mort, his wife and her new suitor ensue while ultimately concludes with death.

Writer/Director David Koepp does a superb job with an all-star cast. The on-screen tensions between Depp and Bello demonstrate a very realistic account of post-separation difficulties. Director of Photography Fred Murphy provides the viewer with a stunning visual display that brings forth the emotional underpinnings of the film.

Depp, who has been one of my favourite actors since his Nightmare on Elm Street days, is convincing in every movement and mannerism that Bello has left him for another man. Koepp delivers a realistic portrayal of the dissolving relationship that remains unresolved for Depp although Bello has moved on.

Bello seems genuine in her concern for Depp as his paranoia and erratic behaviour consume him. Marriages often end amicably and although they didn't keep their marriage intact many former spouses do still care for each other. When new partners come on the scene it is a difficult balancing act which this film aptly demonstrates.

This suspense thriller is not overtly a divorce movie but is very much driven by the separation of Depp and Bello. No courtroom drama here but a very exciting divorce film that accurately portrays some of the difficulties that former spouses face that ultimately concludes in a dramatic finish that sets Depp at ease.

If there is a movie that you would like reviewed please send a request to me. The complete list of movies I have reviewed may be viewed here.

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More information about child custody rights and procedures may be found on the Indiana Custodial Rights Advocates website.

©2012 Stuart Showalter, LLC. Permission is granted to all non-commercial entities to reproduce this article in it's entirety with credit given.

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