Marriage Story

Marriage Story

I really admire most of Noah Baumbach's films but "While We're Young" was really lost me with how mediocre it was and I don't think I made it more than 10 minutes before I bailed on " The Meyerowitz Stories (New and Selected)". So with that in mind and kind of generally becoming less engaged with movies I didn't really even hear a word about "Marriage Story" until I saw it pop up on Netflix.

What a pleasant surprise this was. Baumbuch returns to the subject of divorce that was the primary focus of what I think is probably his greatest movie "The Squid and the Whale", but where that movie took the perspective of the child in the family, this is largely focused on Adam Driver's character. It certainly doesn't feel redundant in any manner and I really liked the heavy focus on the litigious aspects of the phenomenon.

I think the greatest achievement of "Marriage Story" is how funny it is while being just as dramatically/psychologically probing as something like Bergman's "Scene's from a Marriage". In Baumbach's previous work he has at times drifted into hard drama ('Margot at the Weddding", "Greenberg") and pure screwball comedy ("Mistress America") but here he finds a wonderful balance between the two.

I would put this in top three Baumbach along with "Squid and the Whale" and "Frances Ha". All three hit this balance to some extent but "Marriage Story" feels the most effortless of the trio.

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