Rabbit Hole: A movie about two people dealing with the same traumatic event in different ways

Rabbit Hole follows a married couple eight months after their son dies and shows how they cope in different ways while trying to make their marriage work.

What I liked about this movie

  • The relationship Becca (Nicole Kidman) forms with the high school senior, Jason (Miles Teller), who accidentally killed her son in a car accident
  • The comic book Jason creates that deals with parallel universes, the concept of infinity, and there being infinite versions of ourselves in infinite galaxies (i.e. one where Becca is happy and where Jason doesn’t have to live with the burden of manslaughter)
  • Seeing two people cope in different ways with the same traumatic event

My favorite scene

Becca finally asks her mom, Nat (Dianne Wiest) for advice about how to cope with a lost child. Nat lost her son too, and, up until this point, Becca hasn’t asked her mom for advice because her brother died at 30 from a drug overdose and Becca’s son died from running into the street while chasing a dog. She doesn’t like comparing the two. In this moment she gets over that.

INT. NAT'S BASEMENT

Becca and Nat have just put boxes of Becca's child's things in the corner of a dim-lit concrete basement. A dark but hopeful basement.

BECCA
Does it ever go away?

Touched that her daughter is asking her for advice, somberly Nat says...

NAT
No...

Becca looks away, not finding the relief she may have been looking for.

NAT (cont.)
I don't think it does. Not for me it hasn't and it's gone on eleven years.

Becca nods her head.

NAT (cont.)
(beat)
It changes though.

Becca sighs and straightens, looking at her mother for more, some glint of hope she may be able to hang on to.

BECCA
How?

NAT
I don't know -- the weight of it I guess. At some point it becomes barable.

Becca is now listening, focused.

NAT (cont)
It turns into something you can crawl out from under and carry around like a brick in your pocket. And you can forget it for a while, but then you reach in for whatever reason, and, there it is. All red, dead. Which can be awful. But not all the time. It's kinda -- not that you like it exactly but it's what you got instead of your son. And so, you carry it around.

Becca looks down, eyes red and glassy.

NAT (cont)
It doesn't go away, which is --

BECCA 
(almost whispering)
Which is what?

NAT (cont)
Fine, actually.

Nat walks off the screen and Becca's eyes follow her.

Lesson

After a traumatic event affects you and someone else, be respectful of how the other person copes.

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