George Clooney and The Descendants have certainly impressed the Hollywood power-brokers with an impressive haul at the Golden Globes and high hopes for more success at the upcoming Oscars.
Clooney leads an eclectic cast in telling the story of a family struggling to stay together and rebuild after a tragic accident.
Lawyer Matt King (Clooney) is a man who has grown distant from his family as work and wider family commitments dominate his life.
But, when his wife is involved in a boating accident that leaves her barely holding on to life, he must step up and take charge, if only he knows how.
The two daughters - 17-year-old Alexandra (Shailene Woodley) and 10-year-old Scottie (Amara Miller) - have their own problems to deal with and Matt has few solutions.
What complicates the grieving process is the news that Matt's dying wife has been having an affair.
Anger turns to curiosity as Matt seeks answers to the circumstances of the relationship.
With his wife's ventilator about to be turned off, Matt seeks out the lover - realtor Brian Speer (Matthew Lillard) - to offer him the opportunity to say goodbye.
In his journey to find Speer, Matt takes his family along, as well as Alexandra's funny, dopehead friend, Sid (Nick Krause), as they explore some of Hawaii's spectacular natural beauty.
I've never been a card-carrying member of the Clooney fan club but his performance here is certainly worthy of the accolades he has received.
Like a good novel, The Descendants has layers, twists and depth as Matt tries to unlock the secret of getting his family back on track.
(M), 130 minutes