Take This Waltz
Review: Take This Waltz
Writer/director Sarah Polley (Away From Her) creates an intriguing character study about a 28-year-old woman, Margot (Michelle Williams), who immediately grows an intense attraction with a man, Daniel (Luke Kirby), she meets at the airport. When Margot finds out he lives right across the street from Daniel, she admits to him that she is married, and that she must hold back her feelings for him. Margot and her husband, Lou (Seth Rogan), have been happily married for five years. Margot hangs out with Daniel a lot, and he basically interferes in Margot's relationship with Lou. It's tough for Margot to hold back her feelings for Daniel, and the film takes you through a journey that asks the question of what long relationships do to love, sex, and our images of ourselves.
Director Sarah Polley crafts a realistic world through her direction and characters. Her script is well-written and nicely polished, giving the main characters dialogue that match with the their chemistry with one-another: Margot and Lou, Margot and Daniel. Polley creates some sort of utopia with a fleshed out and likeable main character that you can really hold on to throughout of the film. It's what gives the film more substance in terms of characters.
The actors bring great realism to their characters. Michelle Williams plays the hell out of Margot. She's an easily likeable actor, and her character is even more interesting. Seth Rogan's performance is pretty great, too, as Margot's husband, a chicken cook-book writer. I always like Seth Rogan. He's always very funny and charming in the stoner comedies, and he brings that terrific charm to Lou. He's just so good in this film.
I may sound like I'm praising the hell out of this film. I'm really not. The film is definitely flawed. One of the film's problems is the pacing. The pacing is uneven, leaving you with a film that is a tad too long and occasionally pretty boring. Yes, Margot is a nice character, but some scenes with her and Daniel are long, drawn out, and uninteresting. Which leads me to the film's next problem: Daniel and Margot's relationship. It felt underwhelming, and that's a big, big problem since that's a crucial plot-point of the movie. This relationship does create some tension on where Margot and Lou's relationship will go if Lou finds out about Daniel, which is because you care more about Margot and Lou than you do about Margot and Daniel, which ultimately leads to a conclusion that feels a little disappointing. That's just a personal issue, though.
Take This Waltz is charming, ambitious, and occasionally funny. Polley creates a nice romantic world that certainly entertains at a lot of points. Her direction is stylish (there's a 360 shot towards the end that's nothing short of brilliant) and her writing is strong. But she unfortunately fails to create an interesting romance between Margot and Daniel, which is one of the most important aspects of the film. The film drags at some points and a lot towards the final act, leaving us with a conclusion that I , personally, was a little bit disappointed with.
Take This Waltz is worth watching, for sure. Whether or not it's worth paying for to see in theaters is arguable. It's a perfectly decent film in a strong year.
2.5/4 (Rent It)