Captain Fantastic

Rated 2.0

A man raising his six kids in a rigorous existence in the wilds of the Pacific Northwest (Viggo Mortensen) ventures down to Arizona for the funeral of his wife, where his in-laws (Frank Langella, Ann Dowd) express their determination to sue for custody of the kids and raise them with the benefits of “civilization.” Writer-director Matt Ross draws good performances from all concerned (including George MacKay and Nicholas Hamilton as Mortensen’s two oldest sons), and he treats his story evenly without setting up cardboard heroes and villains. But the pacing is a little too even—plodding, in fact, and the movie peaks two or three times before the closing credits finally roll. In the final analysis, Ross gives us little reason to care what happens to this smug hippie and his half-savage, know-it-all brood. J.L.