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Held Over: “King’s Speech” and “Blue Valentine”

January 26, 2011

 Blue Valentine is an intimate, shattering portrait of a disintegrating marriage.

On the far side of a once-passionate romance, Cindy (Academy Award Nominee Michelle Williams) and Dean (Ryan Gosling) are married with a young daughter. Hoping to save their marriage, they steal away to a theme hotel. We then encounter them years earlier, when they met and fell in love—full of life and hope.

Moving fluidly between these two time periods, Blue Valentine unfolds like a cinematic duet whose refrain asks, where did their love go? Framing the film as a mystery whose answer lies scattered in time (and in character), filmmaker Derek Cianfrance constructs an elegant set of dualities: past and present, youth and adulthood, vitality and entropy. The rigor of his process is visible throughout the film. Eliminating artificial devices, he has only the truth of the characters to work with. Because Gosling and Williams bring amazing intensity and emotional honesty to their roles, the experience of connecting to these two souls becomes truly moving. trailer

A film critics have been praising with 12 Academy Award Nominations: “The King’s Speech” with Geoffrey Rush, Colin Firth and Helena Bonham Carter is the story of King George VI of Britain, his impromptu ascension to the throne and the speech therapist who helped the unsure monarch become worthy of it.   trailer

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