Thursday, June 1, 2017

Movie Review: "The Lovers" (2017)

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Movie"The Lovers"
Director: Azazel Jacobs
Rating: R
Running Time: 1 hour, 34 minutes

A husband and wife, who have been married for a long time and are each having separate affairs, rekindle their relationship with one another right as they promise their respective lovers they are going to break off their marriage. 

"The Lovers" is written and directed by Azazel Jacobs, who has made several other low budget indies such as "Terri" and "Momma's Man." It stars Tracy Letts and Debra Winger as long time married couple Michael and Mary. They are both clearly been bored in their marriage, and as a result, are each having long running affairs with other people. Michael is with a dancer named Lucy, played by Melora Walters, and Mary is with a writer named Robert, played by Aidan Gillen. Of course, both Mary and Michael have promised their lovers they will leave their respective spouse after their grown up son, played by Tyler Ross, comes into town for a visit with his girlfriend. Wouldn't you know it, right before their son arrives, the two unexpectedly start to rekindle their love for one another and begin a passionate affair of their own.

The first thing we must say about "The Lovers" is that the acting is excellent. We are fans of Tracy Letts and we have enjoyed his work in other various projects in the past. We also enjoy his performance here. Debra Winger gives a solid performance as well, and the two have decent chemistry as an aging couple who has fallen into routine and out of love. Aidan Gillen is surprisingly excellent here, and Melora Walters also gives a fine performance. On the other hand, we can't say we enjoyed the characters, which are a little underdeveloped. All we really know is Michael is unhappy in his marriage, is burnt out at his job, and he appears to becoming increasingly unhappy in his affair the closer it gets to becoming a permanent relationship. Mary is also unhappy in her marriage, seems to be very affectionate towards her boyfriend Robert, and seems massively distracted at her work. She's used to not having any attention paid to her in her marriage. She is obviously loved by Robert in return, but when Michael starts to pay attention to her again, she becomes confused about which man she wants. Should she stay with the man she knows, is comfortable with, and loved at one time, or should she start a new adventure with the other man?

It feels like this movie wants to have a more comedic edge, but the humor isn't always there. Though it definitely is occasionally humorous, "The Lovers" often feels flat. Ultimately, we really don't care about either relationship working out because we aren't super invested in these characters. We do enjoy how this is a more mature romance tale for "people of a certain age," but without much investment in the relationships that are either blossoming or deteriorating, we are simply watching scenarios we don't find all that intriguing play out on screen, even with great performances behind them. The film is short enough where you won't feel bored while watching it, and there are some interesting technical and musical choices behind the scenes, but for us, it definitely falls a little short of our expectations. Tracy Letts ain't a bad singer, though.

My Rating: 6/10
BigJ's Rating: 5/10
IMDB's Rating: 6.4/10
Rotten Tomatoes Rating: 87%
Do we recommend this movie: Sure, why not?

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