R (strong language, sexual content, graphic nudity); 116 min.
A young married woman becomes tempted to cheat on her husband, and not tempted mildly, but tempted like her soul is screaming, tempted like only Michelle Williams can be tempted. What she chooses and what it means form the story of Take This Waltz, written and directed by Sarah Polley ( Away From Her).
The screenplay is a mix of strong and embarrassing moments, sometimes embarrassing because the actors seem so emotionally naked, and sometimes because the actors must put over an awkward chunk of script. At its worse, Polley's style veers toward the cornball. Yet, in the broad outlines of her story, she has clearly created something with a lot of hard truth.
The conflict of Margot (Michelle Williams) is that she loves her husband (Seth Rogen), but her relationship with him has calcified at a childhood level. Now they can only join as playmates, through shared games and funny voices. So when she meets Daniel (Luke Kirby), he offers her something that we think she needs just as much as she thinks she needs it: an adult relationship with adult passion.
Polley's ultimate point in Take This Waltz is complex and sophisticated and can't be discussed here, not without revealing the ending. Suffice it to say, the issues here are bigger than one woman's story.
Exclusive: Landmark Magnolia, Dallas
-- Mick LaSalle,
San Francisco Chronicle