I’ve always fancied myself a TV person. Given the chance, I’m more likely to bingewatch a whole season of Mad Men (RIP) than watch say, a Harry Potter movie. Here lately though, I’ve created a pretty nice routine of turning on a movie before bed to wind the evening down. I’m currently hooked on movies about relationships. It’s no secret that I love love and that includes stories that exemplify the many facets of romantic relationships: the silly, irrational, magical, dark, and sometimes scary feelings between two people. Here are a few movies I’ve recently enjoyed that take a unique look at relationships…
The Spectacular Now is a coming-of-age story about high school seniors Sutter and Aimee falling in love and navigating the rocky transition into adulthood. I really liked this film because it wasn’t cheesy or fluffy and it didn’t play out like an upbeat translation of a young adult novel. The relationship between Aimee and Sutter reminded me of little bits and pieces of all my past relationships and made me nostalgic for my first love.
Ruby Sparks is the lighthearted story of Calvin, a once-successful author crippled by writer’s block. He creates Ruby, his idea of the perfect woman, and writes her into existence. While quirky and funny at first, the film takes an introspective turn and shows how fluid relationships can be. What I loved about this movie was the casting. I’ve seen Paul Dano in very polarizing, supporting roles before but enjoyed him as the leading man in Ruby Sparks. I’m also a huge fan now of Zoe Kazan, who wrote the film and plays Ruby. I didn’t know this until after I watched the movie, but Dano and Kazan have been a real-life couple for several years.
The Loneliest Planet has been on my radar for while. I learned about it through one of my favorite blogs, and it’s available on Netflix now. What peaked my interest was the immediate shift of the relationship between Gael Garcia Bernal and Hani Furstenberg, who play an engaged couple hiking the Caucasus Mountains of Georgia. “The couple hires a local guide…Walking for hours, they trade anecdotes, play games to pass the time of moving through space. And then, a momentary misstep, a gesture that takes only two or three seconds, a gesture that’s over almost as soon as it begins…Once it is done, it threatens to undo everything the couple believed about each other and about themselves.” Chilling, right?
Last Night is a film that takes place over the course of one night and it examines the trite themes all relationships encounter: jealousy, temptation, the past and loyalty. Uber chic Manhattan couple Michael and Joanna are forced apart for one night and their relationship is put to the test. A gorgeous co-worker tempts Michael while Joanna runs into a past love back in town. While the plot is not the most unique, for me the story created a lot of questions about my own life and relationships, future relationships, in particular. How well do you really know someone, and is the bond you think you can trust really strong enough?
So that’s what has been on my radar lately, movie wise anyway. I hope if you have an opportunity to check them out, you are as moved and inspired I was when I watched them. Also, I’d be remiss if I didn’t mention these favorites again: HERE and HERE.