Breaking Upwards Reviews
Upon rewatch though, I found the movie lacking in establishing shots; there's no room to breathe between each quirky little on-day and off-day conflict. The emotions are still real, and the final break-up and goodbye scenes are still brutal and bittersweet, respectively. Daryl Wein and Zoe Lister-Jones have easy, soul-connected chemistry - smartly deriving this movie from a real-life experiment - but their fictional counterparts could have used more grounded reasons for getting together and breaking up. I wonder if they are still on-again-off-again now that Zoe has gotten more mainstream famous.
i l liked how zoe's mom mentioned the guys on the jewish dating website were all octogenarians, and how daryl's mom played PI to suss out what was going on in zoe's life...
i enjoyed more than disliked it but the couple did get kinda irritating with their antics, zoe lister being more so. francis benhamou (zoe lister jone's good friend in real-life too) from Arranged, has a cameo role here.
this was a fifteen thousand (US) dollars effort, very commendable!
The movie addresses a common problem of many couples. They have been together for a long time, got used to each other, attached, co-dependent. Yet, something is not working. Or something is just not as exciting as it used to be. However, they can't end it and let it slide until its too late to save anything. Sometimes saving the relationship is not in our control anymore so breaking up, with least damage possible, is the last possible act of control. And that's what the couple creatively does.
The lead characters are young and don't know what they want. They might be fleeing the seeming monotony of their relationship but they don't know what they look for. I think it's quite accurate for the portayed age group.
All in all, it's an interesting indie with some insights.
Breaking Upwards is a charming, realistic depiction of a couple who are right for each other even though it feels wrong. Strong performances by director/editor/co-writer Daryl Wein and co-writer Zoe Lister Jones carry the film, which has a wry wit and some smart dialogue. And the last shot is truly heart-breaking.
There were few things about the film that I didn't like, but they were so essential to the story that they were impossible to ignore. At the beginning, the stated reason for their break up is that they're both "bored." I recall David Thewlis's monologue from Mike Leigh's Naked in which he rants against people who are bored despite having untold possibilities for engagement: "You have the universe explained to you, and you're bored with it," he says disdainfully. Equally, I recall a former teacher telling me, "If students say they're bored, then they're boring people." I have little patience for characters and real people telling me they're bored, so I was hoping that during the increments of the break-up, past issues would crop up so that we can understand that there is a deeper reason for their split. Most people in their early twenties haven't been hurt enough to deserve ennui.
Also, while on their days off, Daryl and Zoe have no shortage of other suitors. In the construction of the film's plot, this seems like an easy way out. Most often, the choices in real life aren't between a semi-fulfilling relationship and attention from new, flawed suitors (flawed certainly in Zoe's case, but not so much in Daryl's); the choices in real life are between a semi-fulfilling relationship and loneliness, which is a condition that motivates people much more than the lack of fulfillment one finds from fucking one's co-star in a bad off-Broadway play. I wanted to see these characters more vulnerable without each other, which would have made the ending of their relationship so much harder to stomach.
Overall, there is a lot to like about Breaking Upwards, and during all of my future (and one of my past) failed relationships, I'm going to use the phrase "Let's not break up; let's break upwards," but as a film, this indie comedy falls into the trapping tropes that most films of its ilk fall into, making it good enough to make me wish it were so much better.
"Who you calling a bitch, bitch?"
This movie sucked. Two people break up slowly and drawn out end up sleeping with other people and get jealous and angry. The plot was good, the execution wasn't. Didn't love the characters and was just overall bored with this one.
Fun for me was the main female actress was also in a movie I saw where she played an Orthodox Jewish woman. It was fun for me to see her in such a different role.
The actress who plays Jason Schwartzman's wronged gf in the first season of Bored to Death was also in this. Is there a shortage of beautiful Jewish NYC based acresses? I highly doubt it.