Adele (Kate Winslet) is a single mother, whose divorce from her husband has left her a depressed and lonely woman. On a visit to the supermarket with her son Henry, escaped convict Frank (Josh Brolin) takes the family hostage over the Labor Day weekend before he can make his escape to freedom.
The news is full of women who, for whatever reason, depression, loneliness, gullibility, just plain crazy, fall in love with criminals while they’re behind bars. It takes a ‘special’ kind of woman to form such an emotional attachment, with a man capable of a hideous crime. Labor Day is one of those stories, and to watch it requires a small suspension of reality.
For those of us not in the emotional states listed above, you’re asked to believe someone could be so charismatic that over the course of three days, could have a woman and her son fall so deeply in love with them that they’re willing to forgo all reason and their life as they know it.
My suggestions is suspend that reality and go with the flow of Labor Day, because what you watch will be a truly wonderful story about the bonds we can form with one another, when kindness, care, love and understanding are part of our lives.
Part of why this scenario works so well is Kate Winslet and Josh Brolin. Their relationship, whilst moving quickly from kidnapper/hostage to something else entirely, is heartfelt and to be honest…hot!
Kate Winslet portrays perfectly, a woman who so desperately wants to feel what it’s like to be loved again. From her shaky hands to her slow breathing to her pensive yet calculated movements, Winslet will have you wanting Adele to give in to her emotions like nothing you’ve ever felt before.
Josh Brolin also brings the heat. He is charismatic and soulful, but not in that creepy, brainwashing criminal way, more as a man conflicted with his past, yet determined not to let his convict status, change the person he is at his core.
Whilst, Labor day isn’t perfect, at its heart it is a tender story about how regardless of the mistakes a person makes in their life, showing compassion and resisting judgement, can open up a world you never thought possible.
– Suzanna Parisi, DB Magazine