The One I Love

Critics Consensus

The One I Love doesn't take its intriguing premise quite as far as it could, but it still adds up to an ambitious, well-acted look at love and marriage.



Reviews Counted: 90

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User Ratings: 10,043


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Average Rating: N/A
Reviews Count: 0
Fresh: 0
Rotten: 0


Average Rating: 3.7/5

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Movie Info

The highly anticipated debut feature from acclaimed author Charlie McDowell, THE ONE I LOVE is an original tale that continues to showcase McDowell's keen observations of human relationships with a distinct and comedic voice. THE ONE I LOVE, written by Justin Lader, was produced by Mel Eslyn and executive produced by Mark Duplass who stars opposite Elisabeth Moss. On the brink of separation, Ethan (Duplass) and Sophie (Moss) escape to a beautiful vacation house for a weekend getaway in an attempt to save their marriage. What begins as a romantic and fun retreat soon becomes surreal, when an unexpected discovery forces the two to examine themselves, their relationship, and their future. (C) TWC- Radius

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Ted Danson
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Critic Reviews for The One I Love

All Critics (90) | Top Critics (32)

  • The film owes everything to its actors and particularly to Moss, who is capable of constantly surprising reactions, like the flurry of little nods Sophie gives to express delight.

    Nov 26, 2014 | Rating: 3/5 | Full Review…
  • Ethan and Sophie are never more than playthings of the premise; Moss and Duplass are the sole sources of nuance and vitality, and they seem unduly hemmed in by the movie's unimaginative confines.

    Sep 5, 2014 | Full Review…
  • Like figures in a funhouse that is both philosophical and phantasmagoric, the characters in "The One I Love" spook you, both inside your head and inside your heart.

    Sep 4, 2014 | Rating: 3/4 | Full Review…
  • "The One I Love" is a weird but gutsy exploration of what happens when we alternately idealize and find fault with our romantic partners.

    Sep 4, 2014 | Rating: 3/4 | Full Review…
  • Says more about intimacy and individuality than any romantic comedy or romantic tragedy in years.

    Aug 28, 2014 | Rating: 3/4 | Full Review…
  • "The One I Love" is an odd, unsettling and ultimately satisfying movie.

    Aug 27, 2014 | Rating: 3.5/5 | Full Review…

Audience Reviews for The One I Love

A floundering couple go away on a weekend retreat where a hexed cottage miraculously bestows them with their ideal versions of each other. Sophie's ideal Ethan exercises, doesn't wear glasses, and has a cooler beachier hairstyle. Ethan's ideal Sophie is always sunny and smiling, doesn't nag him about his poor eating habits, and is content to busy herself whenever he gets distracted and disappears from their romantic getaway. Real Sophie and Ethan agree to spend fifteen minutes each with their respective fantasy beaux just to figure out what's happening, but like in any tense relationship drama, greener grass begets green-eyed jealousy. The suspenseful thriller aspect of this film does indeed provide eerie WTF moments and threats of danger, and I thought these perfect mirages would be metaphors for those six insignificant things we'd like to change about our partners, but then *spoilers*, the already surreal movie takes an awkward dip into surreal reality, revealing that the mirages are actually living people - past clients whose partners chose the better versions of themselves and have now been coached and nip/tucked to imitate new clients in an attempt to escape the cottage. Dark and mindfucky metaphor of how we change ourselves to adapt to new lovers whom we may not even be that into, but the rules of this satirical universe aren't entirely elucidated, so the plot falls apart from there.

Alice Shen
Alice Shen

Super Reviewer

An inventive little twist to the usual relationship comedy makes for an interesting time at the flickers, at least initially, as a couple venture to a retreat to mend their troubles. The follow-through leaves something to be desired, and yet this is still a more interesting piece than most, with something valid to take away at the ending.

Kevin M. Williams
Kevin M. Williams

Super Reviewer


This is one of the smartest and yet simple concepts I have seen in the fantasy/relationship drama genre. Going in I was unaware of the concept, which revolves around a troubled couple at a resort, who find that the back guest house is a door into some kind of fantasy world where they find their true bliss, at a great cost. Read more at

Spencer S.
Spencer S.

Super Reviewer

The premise is right up there with any Charlie Kaufman film (Being John Malkovich, Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind, Scynecdoche New York), containing so much juicy potential for interpersonal revelations, but the entire set up is thrown away in the third act for a "thriller" movie that came out of nowhere and does nothing but add a period in the middle of the sentence. I wonder what th.

Matthew Slaven
Matthew Slaven

Super Reviewer

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