The Confirmation (PG)
Clive Owen (Words and Pictures) essays another flawed father-figure in this middling family drama from the writer of 2013’s Nebraska. This time he’s a down-on-his-luck carpenter, spending time with his estranged 8-yearold son Anthony (St Vincent‘s Jaeden Lieberher) the weekend before the boy’s first communion and confirmation. ‘‘That’s a lot of church for one week,’’ Walt exclaims to his exwife, before she growls, ‘‘keep him out of trouble’’.
Unfortunately that’s something Walt finds hard to do and within hours they’ve visited a bar, his car has died and they’ve been evicted from Walt’s house. Discovering his tools have been stolen is the final straw for Walt, sending him into a tailspin that will surely end with him crawling into a bottle. But Anthony is determined to stop him doing that – no matter what it takes.
Very much a slice-of-life character study, The Confirmation is a film that’s pleasant enough to watch, but won’t live long in the memory. Owen delivers his usual ramshackle charm, but aside from scrapes with various low lifes and predictable paternal bonding, there’s really not much for him to do. This simply premised tale lacks any real sparkle to set it apart. – James Croot