The Confirmation (Blu-ray)

June 16, 2016 5 Min Read

Review by: Matt Malouf

Plot: What’s it about?

I admit it’s been quite some time since I’ve been to church, but I was raised Catholic. Every denomination does things their own way, but the Catholics are very traditional and routine. One has a general idea of what to expect every Sunday. A few friends had me going to a Baptist service a few times not long ago, and while I can appreciate their way of doing things, it was quite different than what I was used to. I bring this up because the character in The Confirmation is close to his confirmation, where one is confirmed Catholic. While religion doesn’t dominate the film, we get a few scenes of this character going to confession, among other things. It’s the main plot that involves a search for a stolen toolbox that’s just a bit too silly for my liking.

A young boy named Anthony (Jaeden Lieberher) is about to have his confirmation. We see him in confession, but he really has nothing to confess. His mother, Bonnie (Maria Bello) tries hard to push faith on Anthony, and expects much out of her son. She’s going out of town and that’s when she asks her Ex-husband, Walt (Clive Owen) to keep Anthony for a while. Walt is something of a train wreck, he’s an alcoholic and fumbles around looking for work. He’s a carpenter, but is a bit down on his luck. It takes a little while, but eventually Walt and Anthony are on a journey to recover Walt’s stolen toolbox. We see them drive around looking for whoever did it. A string of random characters pop up throughout the film, including Drake (Patton Oswalt). He and Walt have a history, and Drake has a list of potential suspects of who he believes still Walt’s toolbox. To say there’s something beneath the surface here would be to give the film more credit than it deserves. There’s just not much to these character’s journey to make us care much. Walt is far from likeable, but as a character, he’s also just not very interesting. I could forgive the more familiar elements if I cared a bit more about the journey, but I didn’t. It doesn’t help that the premise is just a bit too weak for its own good. There’s simply little here to get excited about. It’s well intentioned, but ultimately, Confirmation is a dud.

Video: How does it look?

I admired the transfer from beginning to end. It’s not necessarily the most visually appealing film, but it always appeared nice and clean. The print was pristine with strong details and colors throughout. We get an AVC encoded 1.85:1 transfer.

Audio: How does it sound?

We get a DTS HD track that is a bit underwhelming. I had to keep the volume up a bit higher than usual to ensure I heard everything. We get very little background noise, save for a few scenes. While I wasn’t blown away by this track, it serves the film in a decent enough manner.

Supplements: What are the extras?

  • A Father Son Story: Inside the Characters of The Confirmation – Director Bob Nelson is interviewed as well as actor Clive Owen about the part, the script and some behind the scenes footage.
  • The Performances of The Confirmation – A little more robust than the above segment, but it does feature some more in-depth interviews with the cast and crew.

The Bottom Line

I can’t complain about the performances, but everything else about this film just didn’t work for me. I tried to let it win me over, but I found myself strangely detached from the whole thing. It doesn’t help that Walt isn’t a very interesting or likeable lead character. The plot is also a bit too flimsy as well. The whole search for a toolbox is more than a little silly. Well intentioned, but ultimately forgettable. Skip it.

Disc Scores