Away We Go

Question: When is a road movie not a road movie?

Answer: When the two principals already know and love each other. The problems they encounter in THIS road movie exist at their many stops along the way, not between the two of them.

Director Sam Mendez ("Revolutionary Road" and "The Kite Runner") brings us a loving couple, played by John Krasinski ("The Office" and "Leatherheads") and Maya Rudolph ("Saturday Night Live" and "A Prairie Home Companion") who are happily expecting their first baby. They have envisioned a storybook setting for their firstborn, complete with visits to Grandpa and Grandma's house.

When they go to visit the aforementioned G & G, they discover that, unbeknown to them, the old folks are preparing to flee the nest: They have accepted a position in something like the Peace Corps. In addition, they have sold their house! Jeff Daniels ("Squid and the Whale" and "The Lookout") and Catherine O'Hara ("A Mighty Wind" and "Penelope") are so excited about this new phase of their lives, they don't even notice how much it upsets our young couple.

So much for making plans...the rest of the movie consists of their travels to many other destinations, where, each time, our optimistic couple hopes to find family, stability and a new storybook ending. We finally realize that, this time, it is the destination, not the journey that is important. Their friends and relatives are portrayed by a roster of capable actors who, much to our couples' chagrin, show them that an imaginary scenario is always more fun and romantic than real life. Maggie Gyllenhaal is particularly effective as a sanctimonious Earth Mother.

This movies is rated "R" so brace yourself for some forthright language and lovemaking. No car chases or blowie uppie stuff, though...