Blu-ray and DVD Reviews

Things We Lost in the Fire

Reviewed by: Scott Chitwood
Movie Rating:
4 out of 10
Extras Rating:
6 out of 10
Movie Details:
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Rating: R

Starring:
Halle Berry as Audrey Burke
Benicio Del Toro as Jerry Sunborne
David Duchovny as Brian Burke
Alexis Llewellyn as Harper Burke
Micah Berry as Dory Burke
John Carroll Lynch as Howard Glassman
Alison Lohman as Kelly
Robin Weigert as Brenda
Omar Benson Miller as Neal
Paula Newsome as Diane
Sarah Dubrovsky as Spring
Maureen Thomas as Grandma Ginnie Burke
Patricia Harras as Howard's Wife
V.J. Foster as Distressed Man
Caroline Field as Teresa Haddock

Special Features:
7 Deleted Scenes
Featurette: A Discussion About "Things We Lost in the Fire"

Other Info:
Widescreen (2.35:1)
Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround Sound
French and Spanish Language
French and Spanish Subtitles
Running Time: 118 Minutes

Synopsis:
The following is from the DVD cover:

"Academy Award winners Halle Berry and Benicio Del Toro star in director Susanne Bier's (the Oscar-nominated 'After The Wedding') powerful new drama 'Things We Lost in the Fire.' Audrey Burke (Berry) is reeling from the shock of the news that has just been delivered to her door by the local police: her warm and loving husband Brian (David Duchovny), the father of their two young children, has been killed in a random act of violence. Once anchored by the love and comforts of their 11-year marriage, Audrey is now adrift. Impulsively, she turns to Jerry Sunborne (Del Toro), a down-and-out addict who has been her husband's close friend since childhood. Desperate to fill the painful void caused by her husband's death, Audrey invites Jerry to move into the room adjacent to their garage in the hope that he can help her and her children cope with their sudden loss. Jerry is facing a daily battle to stay off drugs, but in his unexpected role as surrogate parent and friend to Audrey's son and daughter he finds a core of inner resilience. As Jerry and Audrey navigate grief and denial, their fragile bonds are constantly tested. Working together, however, they discover the strength to move forward."

"Things We Lost in the Fire" is rated R for drug content and language.

Mini-Review:
It's tough to enjoy a movie when you don't like any of the characters involved. That's the problem with "Things We Lost in the Fire." Halle Berry plays Audrey Burke, a woman whose husband has recently been murdered. As they deal with losing him, she finds herself reunited with a childhood friend of her husband. Benicio Del Toro plays Jerry Sunborne, a drug addict who relied heavily upon Brian Burke, played by David Duchovny.

Now a woman could be forgiven for acting irrationally in such a trying time, but Audrey seems to be exceptionally irrational. She relies on Jerry as a last link to her husband, then tells him to his face that she wishes he died instead of Brian. She asks Jerry to crawl in bed and cuddle with her so she can go to sleep, yet later throws him out of her house citing he's a bad influence on her children. She drives him back to taking drugs, then drags him back into rehab again. It's such a dysfunctional relationship that it's painful to watch. Matters aren't helped any as we see Berry frequently going into crying fits of rage and anguish. Once or twice is OK in a story like this, but it happens enough that it begins to lose its impact.

I can't say there was much I enjoyed about this film. It was slow, long, and depressing. If you're into character dramas or films trying to get awards nominations, you'll enjoy this. Otherwise avoid it.

The bonus features are quite lean on this DVD. There's a 'making of' featurette that has your typical interviews and behind the scenes footage. You'll also find seven deleted scenes, but none of them are significant to the story.

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