While this crisis is nail-biting, as the audience has come to care for Adam and Victoria, other problems stemming from similar core issues aren’t as dramatically engaging. At one point, the two have a fight about how he used to steal her pills, but Adam’s doctor has now prescribed those same ones for him, so to him, it is all good now. Victoria vehemently disagrees. This fight happens well before the gun incident, but it is not the first time his substance abuse problems have been brought to light; nor is it the last. Leaving this moment, or a different moment that is similar on the cutting room floor would have helped improve the overall pacing and dramatic immersion of this real-life tale. As it is, Homemade drags it fits and starts during its middle 30-minutes.
With that being said, the film is overall, pretty fantastic. Bernstein and Maris make excellent use of split-screen during the aftermaths of the couple’s fights. This way, both reactions are given equal footing, so the audience can empathize and sympathize with both people. In terms of pulling at your heartstrings, Homemade is remarkably successful. Adam’s parents discuss how he was before his post-traumatic stress and traumatic brain injury and how he acts now. They question at what point is it no longer the medical diagnoses that you fault, and instead, accept that this how Adam himself is, or would, act. The two don’t have a clear answer, but it is the question itself that intrigues.
“…shockingly bleak, very personal, occasionally dark moments…”
Victoria’s struggles to keep herself, the household, and her husband together are relatable. Adam continually strives to do better, and in his officer training courses, he is doing remarkably well. No one is the villain, and the movie is wise to know that.
Homemade may have pacing issues, but considering the directors had to whittle down 5-years worth of footage, into one whole arc complete with a journey’s end, it is an impressive endeavor. It becomes a must watch due to its stellar ending, which is both topical and a heartbreaking critique of how even the most well-being doctors can be misguided. Overall, this is Daine that everyone would do well to check out.
"…the directors had to whittle down 5-years worth of footage..."