Ruby Sparks is an honest, entertaining, and insightful picture that, despite a very 'filmy' happy ending, offers up an amusingly frank deconstruction of the 'dream girl' idea that pervades much modern fiction.
Kazan the writer asks a lot of Kazan the actress, putting her through an emotional wringer while also calling upon her to convincingly traverse a path from happiness to humiliation without missing a beat. She seldom disappoints.
If the result feels like a Pinocchio story that spends too much time with Geppetto, or a takedown of narcissism that never breaks free of what it's critiquing, Dano nonetheless makes Calvin compelling company.
It tackles the idea that people in a relationship will often try to remake the other person in their image. Some of the twists are more obvious than others, but it has just enough charm (mostly from Kazan herself) to skate by.