Seeing that Ryan Reynolds is god’s perfect idiot (his words, not mine), I’m sure everyone here has seen his latest Netflix romp The Adam Project. If you haven’t yet, get to it. It’s a lot of fun. Great popcorn movie. And do yourself a favor and use the subtitles. There’s nothing better than seeing “wound farts” pop up on the screen lol.
So there’s lots of good things to say about the movie, but there’s one detail that really resonated with me as a mom. If you read the title, you can probably guess I’m talking about Adam’s mom, Ellie.
Played by the ever lovely Jennifer Garner, Ellie is a wonderful character raising an asshole of a preteen. And she deals with it like a frickin badass. Any other popcorn movie might have shoved her off to the back burner. The main story follows Adam, young Adam, and their father. Talk about a male dominated cast. All they really needed to do was throw out a quick, “Be nicer to your mom, kid,” and that would be that.
But The Adam Project took the time to really appreciate this underrated role of the grieving, single mother. Despite her low screen time, she’s not a placeholder. She’s a real character. And I don’t mean to be beat a dead horse here, but they accomplished it without having Ellie speak to a single other female character. Which I think is very cool. Because it is and always will be my stance that a woman doesn’t need another woman around to be a woman.
The scene that really nailed it was when Adam runs into her at the bar and has a conversation. She doesn’t realize it, but this is her future son apologizing to her for being such an asshole. For not appreciating how much she’s sacrificing. This is him saying “I love you, and thank you.”
And I loved how much Ellie responded to hearing it (and how well Garner portrayed that emotional response). She needed to hear that. Because even though she’s tough as nails, even though she can handle anything that comes her way, sometimes a mom needs to have a little validation and support.
On a completely different topic…
A few months ago I talked about the movie Chaos Walking and the male vulnerability that’s usually missing in these kinds of flicks. That’s another thing I loved about this scene in particular: Adam’s vulnerability. They don’t shy away from it, and I’m here for it. Folks, know when to apologize. Don’t make excuses, own up to your mistakes. And don’t be afraid to be a little emotional.
I also saw this as Adam drove away from… well, I won’t spoil it. But I can say his heart wrenching “God damn it!!” had me feeling a few things. So bravo for showing some genuine emotion aside from anger and badassery in an action star.
So what did you think of The Adam Project?