Little Children

Director: Todd Field
Year Released: 2006
Rating: 1.0

An unhappy housewife (Kate Winslet) and an equally unhappy stay-at-home Dad (Patrick Wilson) start an unlikely affair; meanwhile, there's a pervert (Jackie Earle Haley) wandering around the neighborhood that has all these hysterical parents in a fervor. There's so much wrong with this it's a staggering: the dreadful, obvious voice-over, the pedohysteria (in the pool scene where the kids are forced to get out of the water, I was hoping for Haley to scream, "I'm not an animal!"), keeping the Jennifer Connelly character in the background (presumably to make the Wilson-Winslet affair more 'acceptable' to the audience), the inability to separate the film from its literary roots and, following that, the fact that Field is always pointing out Significant Moments, as if scenes were surrounded by gigantic quotation marks. Even Haley's character, as good as the performance is, boils down to what people imagine a creep to be: spying on tykes in the pool, living at home with Mom, masturbating in a car while Jane Adams sobs. Poor, poor Jane Adams.