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This movie is not half as controversial and interesting as its premise makes it sound. As a matter of fact, the movie is doing a pretty effective job avoiding everything that potentially could have turned this movie into an interesting and controversial one. It's a pretty shallow movie for most part, which is all due to the way how it gets told and the movie handles its characters.

It's easy to say this is a pointless movie, since most movies, by definition, are pretty pointless ones but this one still feels very pointless nevertheless in the sense that I'm still not entirely sure what it was trying to say and tell with its story. It's never heavy or deep enough to be a serious and effective drama and never interesting or controversial enough to have some good talking points.

I was actually surprised to find out that this movie got directed by a director who had been regularly making movies for as long as since 1993 already. It most definitely didn't show. While watching this movie I was convinced about it that it got done by a first time director, who still had to learn about basic storytelling and character development. There just was something off about all of it. There never was a good transition between its different sequences and even the acting comes across as 'bad' at times, despite the fact that this movie stars some great actors in it, such as Robin Wright and Naomi Watts. It made it all the more apparent to me that director Anne Fontaine wasn't really sure or confident enough on how to handle and approach its story and actors.

The foremost reason why this movie feels like an emotionally shallow one is because of its characters. Thing that mostly bothered me about this movie was how extremely underdeveloped its male characters all were. This movie is truly about its two female leads and focuses purely on just them and their thoughts and emotions. Everything else gets pushed to the background, which might have been fine for some other movies but in this case the male characters are a pretty integral of the movie its main plot. At the very least the two sons are. They however are given zero personality in this movie and I mean absolutely ZERO. So, I can understand why and how the two 'older' female characters could fall for each other's sons. I mean, they are obviously good looking and the two females themselves obviously aren't ready to accept their own age and come to terms with their lives as responsible and respectable adults but it just never became clear to me as to why the two young sons so suddenly, without any apparent reason, would fall so blindly for each other's mothers. It does not only feel underdeveloped but also like a missed opportunity. It potentially could have provided the movie with so much more depth and meaning if only the sons characters were developed better, or at the least had some more- and also more distinctive, personalities to them. In all honesty, I couldn't even tell them apart from each other!


The weird thing about the movie also is that at first it's about one thing but toward its end suddenly decides to skip 2 years ahead. The final 30 minutes of this movie doesn't really fit in with the rest of the movie, both tonally and story-wise. It too desperately is trying to wrap things up, not by resolving things but by just simply ending things. One of the other reasons why this movie feels too shallow with all of its drama and emotions. Nothing gets resolved satisfactorily.

It's not like this is the worst movie you could ever watch though. It's still decent enough actually, if you're into these sort of slower and more subtle independent dramas, despite the fact that it just never turns into anything that's all that interesting or surprising. It's still good looking and has some interesting elements to it, that however don't always get handled in the best or most effective of ways.

6/10

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About Frank Veenstra

Watches movies...writes about them...and that's it for now.
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