Synopsis: “It’s about a young couple about to give birth to their first child and they don’t like where they’re living so they embark on a journey across country to decide where they are going to give birth,” Mendes told indieWIRE in an interview. “It’s a, you know, comedy-drama, dramatic comedy, whatever you want to call it. It’s not an out and out, thigh-slapping laugh gag fest, but it’s funny. I was just utterly won over by the charm of the script. And I wanted to make something small and life-enhancing and joyful on some level. Because to me, as much as I love and admire Yates, Yates is not how I think about the world. I believe in his vision, but my mood is much closer to the movie that I’ve just made. It just has a life force in it. A sort of effervescence. I mean I’m an optimist, not a pessimist. I’m not a depressive. But I’m drawn to dark material and I thought it was about time I did something that wasn’t so dark.”
Round-up: "Like all Mendes films, 'Away We Go' runs like a finely wound clock," indieWIRE's Jeff Reichert writes, "but one with the face removed—we can’t tell time on it, so all we can do is admir... e the workings of the mechanism." There are a few folks who would significantly disagree. The New Yorker's David Denby quite liked it, noting that the film's "structure is open-ended, ruminative, rumpled almost, in the manner of a road movie from the nineteen-seventies." While The AV Club's Scott Tobias says the film has "an unexpected depth of feeling, a novelist’s (or memoirist’s) sense of detail, and a panoramic view of what home means." However, most critics seem to side with Reichert. "For all the ground they cover geographically, dramatically their velocity remains zero. Mendes, too, seems to have trouble getting on board with the underachieving set, said The Village Voice's Scott Foundas in his review. Variety's Dennis Harvey finds that the film "emerges as an oddly sour, unappealing road-trip scenario." While The New York Times' A.O. Scott writes: "The vague, secondhand ideas about the blight of the suburbs that sloshed around “American Beauty” and “Revolutionary Road” are now complemented by an equally incoherent set of notions about the open road, the pioneer spirit, the idealism of youth."