Amanda Green and I went to a press screening of The Five-Year Engagement last night. Instead of writing a "real" review, we decided to let you in on our gal-to-gal dialogue about the movie. Here's approximately what we said as we took the escalator down from the movie theater, and walked down the street to get tea (yes, we're boring, we drink tea):
Amanda: Was it just me or was The Five-Year Engagement a lot heavier than the trailer led us to believe? The trailer makes it seem really funny, with a lot of slapstick humor. But the movie was more... real than that. The two characters, Tom and Violet, get engaged and that sort of seems to be the end of their "honeymoon period." "Five-Year Engagement" Giveaway: Win Fun Prizes Or A Cash Card!
Natalie: Yes, it was definitely a lot heavier than I expected. But that was a pleasant surprise about the movie. It explores some complex issues like the reality of sometimes having to put your life and success on hold for your partner. Tom gave up his big-time chef job to follow Violet to Michigan, where she got accepted for her Ph.D. in psychology. Watching his descent into madness as a result was also a surprising twist. I mean, leaving a loaded crossbow on the kitchen table? Dark.
A: There were a lot of interesting gender-role reversals. For starters, Tom makes a living cooking. Chris Parnell's character, Tom's friend in Michigan (who introduces Tom to cross-bows in the first place), also moved for his partner's career and is a stay-at-home dad. And speaking of dark elements, the inevitability of doom here is pretty clear: When Violet and Tom move to Michigan, they know that he could end up resenting her for uprooting him right when his career's about to take off. They talk about it and seem to be on a good path. They move. And things still go really wrong.
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