The film has all the makings of a modern romantic indie drama, quirky female character who dances to a ukelele and rides around in a wheel chair for no reason. A man who is proletarian, emotional, and nice to old people. The film move towards something different with its cinematography and its trajectory. The issue lies in its unjustifiable existence with scenes that have the indie stylings of Grizzly Bear under the words spoken explaining the film. These scenes, the female lead talking to her grandmother about love and the male lead talking to his co-workers about marriage, supposedly give purpose to the whole. Yet, when William's character gets pregnant with another mans child, we are not exposed to the psychology of Gosling's character as to why he just opts to be that child's father. We then devolve into scenes of marital non-bliss tricked by crisp and claustrophobic cinematography. The film ends on a simple dialectic of showing their marriage with the end of their marriage in parallel action. The final outcome is of no importance to an audience that was simply fooled by the performance film emotionality of the main characters and the deceptive nature of what we think are never done before romantic film extremes that encompass Gosling dealing with his masculinity or Williams trying to create a violent psycho-sexual encounter with Gosling. Ultimately the director created a film with characters that can only embody stating cliché things to justify what they do, but we as an audience gain nothing from their union and their demise.
The issue with the romantic film is a lack of meaning. We get the cute scenes that are supposed to warm us, with the realistic scenes that are supposed to awe us with the raw. Actually, we as an audience should expect films about why people get together, not just about them getting together and then ending on a swelling indie rock score
VERDICT: GARBAGE. Instead of this rent or steal Ali: Fear That Eats The Soul, Written On The Wind, L'Eclipse, In The Mood For Love or any of the hundreds of films that use the tension and the frustration of love to help us understand the larger picture sociologically or philosophically.