In Toronto, Margot (Williams) is happily married to Lou (Rogen), but she feels that their relationship is only expressed through humour and that work interests divide them. So it's not surprising that, after a chance encounter with neighbour Daniel (Kirby), Margot starts to consider straying from her marriage. She holds Daniel at arm's length, but is intrigued by everything that's new about him, including his more adult way of talking about sex and relationships. Is taking this leap scarier than waiting around for her marriage to come back to life?
The title comes from the Leonard Cohen song, which plays a key role in a climactic sequence. Indeed, Margot's relationships with both Lou and Daniel are a series of dance steps, although the film is rather a lot more complicated.
Told finely from Margot's perspective, the story is an involving exploration of a flawed, human response to real feelings. We breath a sigh of relief every time Margot makes the correct decision, even as what's right or wrong shifts continually.
Williams gives another astoundingly transparent performance as Margot, letting us into her soul to experience her joy and doubt, the thrill of attraction and the warmth of real love. Opposite her, Rogen seems almost like a cypher, which of course is how Margot has begun to see him, while Kirby exudes mystery and sexuality. And Silverman is terrific in a rare dramatic role as Lou's sister, who distills the film's themes in two key scenes.
Because of its intense intimacy, the film is sometimes overpoweringly emotional. It also drags as Margot waffles about what she's going to do. But this allows Polley to delve deeper into the issues and feelings, most remarkably in two wonderfully swirling scenes: on a funfair ride and in a loft flat. The story's coda is perhaps unnecessary, as the emotional punch has already landed, but the film taps into something that resonates powerfully enough to makes us see our relationships differently.
Run time: 116 mins
In Theaters: Friday 6th July 2012
Box Office USA: $1.2M
Distributed by: Magnolia Pictures
Production compaines: Joe's Daughter
Contactmusic.com: 4 / 5
Rotten Tomatoes: 77%
Fresh: 102 Rotten: 30
IMDB: 6.6 / 10
Director: Sarah Polley
Screenwriter: Sarah Polley
Starring: Michelle Williams as Margot, Seth Rogen as Lou Rubin, Luke Kirby as Daniel, Sarah Silverman as Geraldine, Aaron Abrams as Aaron Rubin, Jennifer Podemski as Karen, Graham Abbey as James, Vanessa Coelho as Tony
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