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Blue Valentine

A film staring Ryan Gosling and Michelle Williams

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Blue Valentine

  • Jan 28, 2011
Rating:
+4
This movie was never going to have a happy ending, I knew that going in. All I kept hearing was that was the most depressing movie of all time. Knowing that I took this to be a classic who done it? Like most people I want a fall guy, I want to know what happened here. I want to know why these beautiful and crazy kids are doomed to fail.
 
Enter Ryan Gosling as the care-free Dean, i doubt he had too much going for him before this story starts and is not too worried about his future. While talented at many things he lacks any ambition and just enjoys the moment. His partner in crime is the recently nominated actress Michelle Williams as Cindy. She seems much more cynical, promiscuous, and is always looking ahead to accomplish more. While opposites may attract these two philosophies of life seem to be at odds in the film.
 
Dean found everything he needs in this little family, instantly making him the more likable character. He treats his daughter like a princess and shows her all the adoration she could ever need. But apparently The Beatles were wrong and a little bit more than love is needed. Cindy has grown into the woman she had to be to help the family survive as a middle-class family in Scranton, Pennsylvania. Dean is more immature and found a job that lets him drink in the middle of the day and be there for his family.
 
These two actors are constantly looking for challenging roles, and in this movie it appears they have found one. How does one portray, in a believable fashion, a six year difference where everything has changed, it would be too much and unbelievable to go from one extreme to another so rather they both rely on subtly, Williams more so. There also seems to be a lot of free riffing and improvisation such as the scene on the Brooklyn Bridge.
 
Gosling is experienced with this kind of acting as he has gone out of his way to find strong independent movies. He easily could be making boat loads of money with huge box office numbers but has always gone after meatier scripts. He plays this role well with a lot of professional experience. His couterpart Williams seems to draw her inspiration more from her own past. At the time this movie was supposed to be made Heath Ledger passed away and out of respect to her and her daughter they delayed shooting. Upon learning this you have to wonder if some of this life experience went into the performance. She rolled effortlessly into this role and played it with such quiet strength, while maybe not the more likable of the two, the performance is stunning.
 
Writer/director Derek Cianfrance wrote this story in 2006 and in two parts. He says the beginning is a love story and the ending is a tragedy, but this isn't split into two distinct halves. Rather the stories are spliced together using high def digital video for the present, while the beginning of the relationship (which is always a little fuzzy) is shot on 16-mm film. This story telling helps to accentuate each moment.
 
But what is never seen is the middle, what happened between these two moments that left these people like this. To the story those moments are not important, it's not important to place blame but rather an examination of how two people can meet and what little it takes to fall in and out of love. Still the effect it can leave on you is overwhelming.
 
Much like a real relationship both sides have their demons and both sides contribute to the end. It's frightening how truthful this movie feels to watch a couple just fall out of love. And Cianfrance doesn't show us his hand, he may lead us in certain directions, but we never see how Cindy and Dean have come to this point in their lives after overcoming so much. Much like in real life they never say where it all went wrong all we are left with are the biggest moments of any relationship, the beginning and end of it. A-

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January 29, 2011
"To the story those moments are not important, it's not important to place blame but rather an examination of how two people can meet and what little it takes to fall in and out of love.." perfectly put! Thanks for the review!!
 
January 28, 2011
Great write-up, Julian! I always find movies done about relationships or love tricky, it's so hard to capture the subleties that lie in every relationship. This movie sounds like it did the trick. It's nice to hear of a film that showcases rather than bulldozes the small moments of life.
January 28, 2011
Thanks, don't call me Shirley/who is Julian
January 29, 2011
Sorry Z! I was having a blonde moment and attempting to read two movie reviews at the same time.
 
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More Blue Valentine reviews
review by . January 09, 2011
posted in Movie Hype
People Change and Feelings Change...Life in Marriage And Marriage In Life....
Love and Marriage. Life and Marriage. How about life and love in marriage? We’ve all heard the stories; why some couples make it and some don’t. I guess I would be lying if I said that director Derek Cianfrance’s “Blue Valentine” brings something new to the table as with films about the hardships of marriage. No, it doesn’t offer anything different, but I guess it is its familiar elements that makes it easily accessible and believable. For some reason, this film …
review by . January 30, 2011
posted in Movie Hype
Caption
It's a movie about life, or rather marriage, as they say. Is it really?   If marriages are like this, then it's uninspiring and one wonders why so many people are flocking to the church for the wedding of a lifetime! This year, Prince William and Kate Middleton are getting married. That's right, despite his parents' failed marriage. It shall be the wedding of 2011 for most people in the UK. That's sidetracking...      Anyway, Blue Valentine is not …
review by . May 23, 2011
posted in Movie Hype
**** out of ****     "Blue Valentine" is a film that speaks to me because it shares my exact philosophies and musings on the mere concepts of love and romance. I felt like I knew these two lovers within myself; which was a good feeling, even through their often times difficult-to-watch hardships. "Blue Valentine" will not be the easiest of films, but it's one of the strongest depictions of on-screen romance I've seen in quite some time. Love it or hate it; "Blue Valentine" does …
review by . January 18, 2011
BLUE VALENTINE is a low budget film, telling us about the beginning and end of a marriage. It stars Ryan Gosling & Michelle Williams. The movie shows us "now" over the space of just a couple of days, as we see this couple along with their roughly 5 year old child, going through mundane tasks and the final arguments that lead to their split. The film also bounces back to the few weeks or months from their first meeting until the day they get married. We see them about 5 or 6 years younger, na├»ve …
review by . December 28, 2011
posted in Movie Hype
EXCELLENT ACTING
      BLUE VALENTINE      I came into this movie expecting nothing mainly because I didn't care enough about it. I hadn't heard to much about it when it came out so I didn't pay much attention to it. But after reading the review of this film from Sir William of Woopak I decided to give it a try. I am really glad I did now because the story is very real and the performances here are excellent.      The film follows Michelle Williams …
review by . December 30, 2010
posted in Movie Hype
“Blue Valentine” is about as perfect a film as any you’re likely to see. Even with the recent release of the brilliant “Rabbit Hole,” it’s been ages since I’ve seen a story so resonant with characters so real. Many wonderful films have taken life issues and heightened them for dramatic emphasis; this movie presents itself so authentically that, if it weren’t for the casting of Ryan Gosling and Michelle Williams, I might have mistaken it for a work …
Quick Tip by . December 28, 2011
posted in Movie Hype
Caption
Now there are moments that some may not want to see and this is not a particularly happy film. Still with all that said I still think it is worth a rental at least. Sure it may not be for every body but it just may be for you. So in the chance that is you, pick it up. This is a great flick with excellent acting.
review by . January 31, 2011
Dean (Ryan Gosling) and Cindy (Michelle Williams) are a married couple with a little girl named Frankie who looks to be about three or four. Cindy works as an ultrasound technician. Dean is a house-painter.      Dean is really good with Frankie, in part because he's still kind of a kid himself, and not in a good way. After agreeing with Frankie that the oatmeal Cindy made her looks disgusting, he plops spoonfuls of it all over the table and suggests that they eat the raisins …
review by . January 22, 2011
posted in Movie Hype
   Without taking sides, Blue Valentine deals with extreme situations and draws parallel lines between his two main extreme opponents. The relationship between Dean (Ryan Gosling) and Cindy (Michelle Williams) evolves beautifully by covering touching issues and contrasts within the life of two once-lovers. It doesn't get too melodramatic, it doesn't get cheesy nor predictable and it juggles with the emotional core of the movie. Dean is a low-educated guy, who is ruled only by his …
review by . December 31, 2010
posted in Movie Hype
Blue Is a Serious Understatement
BLUE VALENTINE   Written by Derek Cianfrance, Joey Curtis and Cami Delavigne   Directed by Derek Cianfrance   Starring Ryan Gosling and Michelle Williams       Cindy: How do you trust your feelings when they can just disappear like that?   Gramma: I think the only way to find out is to have those feelings.       When they say, “For better of for worse,” in wedding vows, I believe they are referring …
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Blue Valentine
is a 2010 American romantic drama film written and directed by Derek Cianfrance that premiered in competition at the 2010 Sundance Film Festival. It is co-written by Joey Curtis and Cami Delavigne and stars Ryan Gosling and Michelle Williams. The film was scored by Brooklyn band Grizzly Bear.
 
The film centers on a married couple, Dean and Cindy, and their relationship over a number of years by shifting between different time periods. Problems with the marriage centre around Cindy's ambition, juxtaposed to Dean's contentment to centre his life around his wife and child.
 
The script recently won the Chrysler Film Project, a competition that awards cash to an outstanding new feature film director, selected from over 550 submissions from across the country, overseen by Independent Feature Project, and evaluated by a panel of eminent film industry professionals.
 
The film was screened in the Un Certain Regard section at the 2010 Cannes Film Festival. It will be distributed by The Weinstein Company, and set for a limited release on December 31, 2010 in USA. The movie will be released earlier in Australia on December 23, 2010.
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Details

Director: Derek Cianfrance
Genre: Drama, Romance
Release Date: Dec. 31, 2010
MPAA Rating: Unrated
Screen Writer: Derek Cianfrance, Joey Curtis
Runtime: 120 minutes
Studio: Think Films
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