The Con­fir­ma­tion (PG)

Sunday Star-Times - Escape - - FILM & MUSIC REVIEWS -

101 mins

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

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