Toronto Film Review: ‘Beneath the Blue Suburban Skies’

  • Variety
Toronto Film Review: ‘Beneath the Blue Suburban Skies’
You never see the color blue in “Beneath the Blue Suburban Skies,” an unassuming slice-of-life family drama in brittle black and white. But Edward Burns still dares you to imagine the soothing shade stretching over the nearly identical middle-class homes of a commuter town outside of New York, symmetrically assembled with unexceptional yards rubbing shoulders with one another. For a film that has more quiet distress than cheeriness in store, this resembles an ironically happy image once considered in color. But through a low-key rhythm that informs much of his fiercely independent work, including that of “The Brothers McMullen” (the actor-writer-director’s 1995 Sundance-winning breakout),

Attentively shot by William Rexer with elegant lighting and deep contrasts — a sweeping look in a modestly-scoped film that warrants a big screen — it all starts with alcohol inside a domesticated kitchen that could be out of a “Pleasantville”-ish 1950s. We watch as Tina mixes
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