Ready or Not
Forgot your password?
Don't have an account? Sign up here
Got more questions about news letters?
Already have an account? Log in here
and the Terms and Policies,
and to receive email from Rotten Tomatoes and Fandango.
Please enter your email address and we will email you a new password.
We encourage our community to report abusive content and/ or spam. Our team will review flagged items and determine whether or not they meet our community guidelines.
Please choose best explanation for why you are flagging this review.
Thank you for your submission. This post has been submitted for our review.
Sincerely, The Rotten Tomatoes Team
Beautifully directed as it takes us through the process of love slowly unraveling and turning into anger and frustration. It manages to convey both sides of a really messy breakup to the point where you don't know who should get your sympathy. It's a heartbreaking journey almost everybody has taken, which is what makes it so spectacularly relatable and melancholic. Two hours of how we end up hurting the people we once cared about, despite our best efforts to treat with respect what, at one point, brought us happiness. And Adam Driver plays once again the sad dude with incredible ease and grace.
I don't understand what was the hype with this movie.It was long and boring and the ending was typical for a Netflix movie....
Essentially a remake of a superior film made 40 years earlier, Kramer vs. Kramer (1979), this movie is a decent enough exploration of a divorce and it's impact on a family in a contemporary setting. The performances are very good but the screenplay has the feel of a play and that leaves you with many monologues that feel overwritten and unrealistic when they should seem honest and authentic. For me there was just something missing as while I love Noah Baumbach as a director and I have found his previous work to be fantastic this was a disappointment as it was simply acceptable when it could have been a masterpiece.
Actress Nicole, Scarlett Johansson, is disgruntled with her husband Charlie Barber, Adam Driver, due to his affair with Mary Ann, Brooke Bloom, and his devotion to his own career as a theatre director. She feels that she has been forced to discard her own ambitions as an actress to support him while he lives in New York City despite her wanting to move to Los Angeles where she had grown up. The couple go through counseling but this is unsuccessful and they will be separated as she has accepted a role in a television pilot and he intends to continue directing the play that she had starred in with a new actress. She serves him with divorce papers shortly after he arrives in Los Angeles to visit her and their son Henry, Azhy Robertson. They each take on aggressive lawyers in the form of Nora Fanshaw, Laura Dern, for Nicole and Jay Marotta, Ray Liotta, for Barber after the more gentle Bert Spitz, Alan Alda, fails to negotiate successfully. Both become depressed as they are lonely without their partners and struggle to understand how they could have once loved each other.
Initially I was pleasantly surprised at the fact that we were seeing the separation from Nicole's perspective as I had assumed that with Baumbach being male he would value Barber over his wife. This later proved to be true as the last three quarters of the film are largely devoted to seeing the effect that Barber not being around his son has on him while his shortcomings such as him having had an affair are brushed under the rug. One of the things that made Kramer vs. Kramer so great is that while Joanna abandons her child and son we understand that she is doing this so that her son does not have to be around her when she is going through a mental breakdown and wants to be a better mother by first fulfilling herself. Many of Nicole's concerns are articulated here but there is the feeling that she is being selfish by wanting to be in Los Angeles and the finality of their lopsided custody agreement do ask the audience to see her as the unreasonable one.
The aforementioned monologues also frustrated me as while I could appreciate the fact that people often pour out their emotions and simply can't stop speaking I was always very aware that I was watching people deliver something that had been written. In particular a discussion that Nicole has with lawyer Fanshaw in which she explains the issues in her relationship with her husband was hard for me to digest as an honest articulation of her pain as there was an artificiality to the writing and to Johansson's performance in this scene that took me out of it. Baumbach also doesn't provide supporting characters as strong as those in other divorce based films as Nicole's 64 year old actress mother Sandra, Julie Hagerty, felt like a caricature. In comparison Margaret Phelps, Jane Alexander, served as a legitimate foil to Ted in Kramer vs. Kramer and displayed his development into a mature, loving father.
At the end of the day the performances are of a high quality as Johansson is provided with her best role since Lost in Translation (2003) and is convincing as a frustrated woman. She is particularly effective in scenes when she silently displays her discomfort with the conduct of her lawyer or the inadvertently hurtful comments made by her husband. Driver gets a lot more to do and is expectedly very good as a man hit with accusations that he had no knowledge of and is very convincing as a man whose anger slowly builds up as time passes and nothing changes for him. The scene in which he final breaks down and tells Johansson that he hopes she dies was a little too much for me but I can see why it needed to be in the film. Other touches added to the film such as Driver's big musical performance simply made me cringe but both get moments to shine and will most likely receive awards recognition.
Brilliant acting, just brilliant , watch it
It's quite conventional movie, and not special to my taste. Not sure why critics love it so much. It's a decent movie but just not as good as the critics say.
I felt like I went through a lot of what Adam Driver's character went through. A modern day Kramer vs Kramer but not quite the level of heartbreak.
Perfect movie, with award worthy performances. One of the best of the year.
This is one of the most emotionally beautiful films I have ever seen. It's like if peeling an onion caused you to laugh instead of cry, but still activated your tear ducts.
Holy frickin' lovely.
This film is a love story about divorce. Charlie (Adam Driver), who is a well-known theatre Director about to take his play to Broadway, and Nicole, (Scarlett Johansson) who has become a well-known actress due to starring in Charlie's plays, meet in this industry and marry living a life together with their son Henry. Ten years into their marriage, Charlie and Nicole decide to divorce amicably without lawyers until Nicole hires a lawyer unannounced and things start to become worse than initially intended.
Noah Baumbach (not to be confused with Johan Sebastian Bach) did a spectacular job taking a sad subject and showing such purity and grace. The movie is so grounded causing it to feel like two real people who truly love each other going through this tough time. Baumbach also creates a theatrical feel to the film. He does this by having long drawn-out scenes coupled with beautiful dialogue usually only between only 2-3 characters at once.
I have to double down with what I said under "DIRECTION." The writing is so pure and real, that it feels like you are truly watching the emotional nature of divorce. You truly feel like you're watching a documentary on two people struggling to balance their secretive resentment and love for each other. I always say that my favorite films are those that can keep me engaged strictly through dialogue and this is a perfect example.
Adam Driver me to the Oscars to watch you receive this reward. Oh my goodness and gracious. There's a specific performance in a scene between Mr. Driver and Ms. Johansson that I think could easily by itself deliver an Oscar for both of them. This is also coming off a great performance in "The Report" (Adam Driver) and an amazing supporting role in Jojo Rabbit (Scarlett Johansson). Not to mention the superb supporting cast with the likes of Laura Dern, Ray Liotta and Alan Alda. This incredible ensemble really takes the film to another realm of realism and beauty.
Marriage Story does what it is set out to do and that is make you feel. Through the Direction, Writing and Acting, this film doesn't make you pick sides or dread so much the process of what can be a very dreadful process. Although the story at it's core is sad, this is also one of the funniest movies of the year and it makes me feel like I'm going through a painful divorce with the same feelings that both Charlie and Nicole feel. I still need to see Uncut Gems, Richard Jewell, Little Women, etc., but as of right now this takes the #1 spot in my top 10 in 2019.
Emotional, touching, and even funny; Marriage Story ranks among 2019's best films.
This film is heartbreaking and beautiful and hopeful and truthful. I wasn't ready for it to end when it did. Adam Driver and Scarlett Johansson are brilliant, and their performances were honest and raw. One of the best movies I've seen in a while. It is heavy but certainly worth the watch.