The Lucky Ones

Rated 3.0

Three vets back from Iraq, two on leave (Rachel McAdams, Michael Peña) and one mustering out (Tim Robbins), chip in together on a cross-country car rental when their flights are cancelled; while on the road, they learn a lot about each other. The script by Dirk Wittenborn and director Neil Burger is contrived and not always convincing—a side trip to a church service and a lawn party is particularly ill-advised, as is a clumsily written scene between Robbins and his disgruntled wife (Molly Hagan). And Burger doesn’t always show a strong sense of the passing countryside—Indiana is Missouri is Colorado is Nevada, pretty much. The movie works best when the car is moving and the focus narrows to McAdams, Robbins and Peña, three pros who work well together—and who work best without external interference.