The Second Film
Directed By: Derek Cianfrance
Starring: Ryan Gosling, Michelle Williams, Mike Vogel
Genre: Romance | Drama
Release Date: December 29, 2010
One of the parallel shots of this disaster film shows the couple, Dean (Ryan Gosling) and Cindy (Michelle Williams) tying nuptial knots with promises of lifetime, with the other story showing the exhausted Cindy wanting a divorce with a teary eyed and equally heartbroken Dean trying desperately to save his marriage like a man splashing his limbs against drowning in the sea. To Cindy, Marriage was a train to the destination, to a life she aspired, for Derek it was just the station. Derek is stuck, to him Cindy and marriage was all he wanted. Cindy wants functionality in her dysfunctional life. You keep asking what went wrong, and thankfully, you are never going to find answers, just brief glances into these personalities.
Blue Valentine is a romantic drama with two parallel stories about a couple’s courtship and their dissolution of marriage years later, a hard hitting examination of a relationship in rocks. Films like such often lead to places where you want to satisfy your vanity as to who went lazy, but the writer-director gives no clues as to what actually is responsible for the loss of love. To the couple, life meant planning after marriage and each other’s arms meant solace and existence, till life struck them. Dean was stuck, Cindy’s thrill was over.
There are subtle cues into the couple’s characterisation in the film; Derek’s laid back existence in life with his innocent romantic charm, his rawness coupled with his emotional vulnerability for his wife and his daughter, Frankie. He is a typical grow old with me part. You might want to blame him, think carefully. Cindy’s family problems are mired in with her hyper-active sexual life (or at least a hint into that), her sinusoidal graph as a person. Cindy didn’t sign up for this, her exhaustion and devastation of hope from her marriage leads to the present.
At the end of the film, Frankie runs behind her dad as he walks away from Cindy, only to be fooled by him to return back to her mother and he continues walking. An upset Frankie cries to her mother, “but, I love him”. So Does Derek, and so does Cindy, but only love is not enough, not for life, which is why this movie becomes the second cog of the troika.
By: Pranshu Sharma