Both old-fashioned and modern, both funny and melancholic, the witty, heartfelt "Celeste and Jesse Forever" is populated by moments that at first appear all too familiar, then turn out to surprise you.
Jones and McCormack have a nice feel for the day-to-day minutiae of coupledom - the inside jokes, funny voices and oddball routines that nobody else ever understands, and that hurt like hell to abandon.
Maybe Celeste and Jesse Forever sometimes works too hard at being funny-sad. Still, it's admirable in its pursuit of an unnamable beast that's elusive and fragile: The funny sadness of the whole damn thing.
Jones co-wrote the uneven script with Will McCormack, and one can't help wishing she'd aimed higher. Acknowledging cineplex clichés isn't enough if you still wind up embracing, rather than subverting, them.