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Margot (Michelle Williams) is a young writer happily married to fellow scribe Lou (Seth Rogen); yet when she meets Daniel (Luke Kirby), their mutual attraction becomes impossible to ignore. One of the finest and most delicate explorations of the troubling, evanescent nature of romance in recent memory, Take This Waltz showcases Sarah Polley's maturation as a director.
Sarah Polley's acclaimed directorial debut, 2006's Away From Her dealt with an aging couple effected by the onset of Alzheimer's disease. Her follow-up, Take This Waltz, also details the end of a relationship, and though the causes here are more quotidian, the emotional impact of the film is equally as devastating.
Michelle Williams plays Margot, a young writer happily married to fellow scribe Lou (Seth Rogen). On an assignment, she meets Daniel (Luke Kirby) - and the mutual attraction between them is impossible to ignore. As Margot struggles with her conflicting and incompatible desires and her own characteristic confusion, her relationship with the complacent and somewhat neglectful Lou deteriorates.
One of the finest and most delicate explorations of the troubling, evanescent nature of romance in recent memory -with deeply affecting performances by Williams, Rogen, Kirby and Sarah Silverman as Lou's troubled sister - Take This Waltz showcases Polley's maturation as a director. The film boasts some breathtaking set pieces, including a 360 pan that's positively heartbreaking and a trip to Centre Island set to "Video Killed the Radio Star." Polley may be the only filmmaker with the emotional subtlety, craft and daring to use a piece of fluff as both vibrant celebration of love in bloom and dirge. As an added benefit, Toronto itself has never looked quite so romantic.
Atlantic Film Festival; Calgary Film Festival; Edmonton International Film Festival; Toronto International Film Festival; Vancouver International Film Festival.
A beautiful and poignant take on a young woman's struggle to find happiness, Take This Waltz will speak to anyone who has ever questioned the fleeting nature of attachment and relationships. Funny, bittersweet and heart-wrenching, Sarah Polley's masterfully written screenplay offers a decidedly sensitive and fresh perspective on this familiar theme. Beautifully shot to capture the youthful vibrancy of summer romance, Take This Waltz is an unforgettable film.
- Meaghan Brander
Sarah Polley's heartbreakingly funny and passionate Take This Waltz takes the clichés of melodrama and obliterates them. In a genre that insists on heroes and villains, she offers a nuanced look at modern love, with all of its contradictions and exquisitely painful eroticism. Michelle Williams offers a remarkably grounded performance as Margot, an aspiring writer and tethered free spirit, who has to decide between the benevolent but predictable love given to her by Lou (Seth Rogen) or the quirky improvisational romance offered by Daniel (Luke Kirby). The result is surprising-and, one realizes, inevitable.
- Marc Glassman