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Rated 3.23 stars
by 26 people


ReelTalk Movie Reviews
Compassionate Cinema Hits Home
by Betty Jo Tucker

Watching Marriage Story ended up being a highly emotional experience for my husband and me. Like the characters played by Scarlett Johansson and Adam Driver, we went through a painful divorce after being married for many years. Fortunately, after a long period of estrangement, we rediscovered our lost love and remarried each other. However, several scenes in this marvelous movie brought back sad memories. That’s probably why we’ve been spending a great deal of time thinking about Marriage Story. We can’t help believing that a sequel has to be made! In fact, my husband is already tossing around ideas for a “working title.” No full-length movie has ever had such a strong impact on us.

Credit goes to director/writer Noah Baumbach (The Squid and the Whale) for his compassionate treatment of the two main characters, Nicole and Charlie. And, of course, to Johansson and Driver for their realistic portrayal of two creative, talented people who have forgotten how much they love each other. Both actors deliver the goods – and more. They even sing a couple of songs that fit right into the plot.

Nicole is an actress and Charlie a theater director, so their interests match but their individual goals, not so much. Nicole sees more opportunities in Los Angeles; Charlie feels living in New York City is needed for his success. They have a darling young son (Azhy Robertson), and arguments ensue about what would be best for him.

When two determined, crafty divorce lawyers (Ray Liotta and Laura Dern) get involved, the battles become brutal.             

"Marriage Story" pierces your heart

and grabs your attention right from the start.

Then burrows deep into your skin.

This masterpiece awards should win.

 

Johansson and Driver excel

in roles that fit them very well.

Nicole and Charlie they become.

A married couple now too numb.

 

How did their love story begin?

What drew them to each other then?

Watching their sad divorce progress

is sometimes funny but still a mess.

 

We love them both; we can’t take sides.

Each one has faults and needs and prides.

A touching film in every scene,

"Marriage Story" commands the screen.    

About those songs mentioned above, they both come from Company, Steven Sondheim’s Broadway play. Johansson belts out “You Could Drive a Person Crazy” with an amusing trio including Julie Hagerty and Merritt Wever, who play Nicole’s caring mom and funny sister, respectively.  Surprisingly, Driver’s version of “Being Alive” had me crying like a baby. I’m glad we don’t have to wait long to hear his wonderful singing voice again. He co-stars with Marion Cotillard in the musical Annette, which should be out early in 2020.

Marriage Story is one of the best films released this year. Don’t miss it.    

(Released by Netflix and rated “R” by MPAA.)


                                                                                                                                                                               
 
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