Monday, March 31, 2008

A Quickie: Married Life

Married Life
Release: 03/07/2008
Rated PG-13
1 hour, 30 minutes

Second-Run Seats ($$) <
> Matinee ($$$)

Pierce Brosnan (The Matador) is Richard Langley, narrator and best friend to Harry Allen, played by Chris Cooper (Breach). Patricia Clarkson (Pieces of April) plays Pat, Harry's wife whom he loves very much. The trouble is in all their years of marriage Harry has never felt that his wife has given him the emotional fulfillment he needs. Enter Rachel McAdams (The Family Stone) as Kay, a radiant, young woman Harry has fallen deeply in love with. Kay gives Harry all those wonderful emotions lacking in his married life, but for the pair to be truly happy, Pat must be hurt, which is unacceptable. To spare Pat the pain and humiliation of divorce, Harry decides the kindest solution is for her to go painlessly in her sleep with the help of poison. As Harry plots and plans, our narrator and swinging bachelor, Richard, sets his sights on his next conquest: the lovely Kay.

Married Life is completely character driven. The sole reason to see this is for the stellar performances. The actors aren't flashy or outspoken; rather, subdued and poised. Chris Cooper wells with emotion and Brosnan swaggers about with effortless charisma and devilishness. Clarkson and her auburn locks exude sexiness, and McAdams is both loving and mildly mischievous though her platinum blonde hair is a bit off-putting. Next to the acting, the 1940's- era costumes and settings are superb. The gentleman wear well-cut suits and wouldn't be caught dead without their hats. Bulky cars and every hand complete with a lit cigarette echo these signs of a different time.

It's a simple story with a smidgen of excitement and the thrill of emotional uncertainty. Nothing visually spectacular that must be seen on the big screen but a must-see for anyone who enjoys these talented actors.

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