8:00 PM, 15th September, 2012
We open on a beautiful beach, where Jeremy (Starr) and Alice (Price) are talking about dreams. We then cut to scenes that show two Australian couples seemingly having a great time on a South East Asian holiday; with markets, more beaches and dance parties. However, scenes towards the end of this section allude to something darker. Then, when we re-join the characters in Australia, one horrible holiday tragedy unearths many smaller secrets...
The Gen X collective of film-makers known as Blue-Tongue Films are fast growing a reputation as quality crafts-people. Their first feature-length was The Square (Semester 1, 2009) and, whilst not technically a 'Blue-Tongue Film', many principals were involved in Animal Kingdom (Semester 2, 2010). This, their latest, was chosen to open the prestigious Sundance Film Festival in Utah this year. It's been sold in many quarters as a bit of a thriller but, whilst it does have some edge-of-your-seat moments, it's more of a family drama with a heavy degree of mystery, one that unfolds at a delicious pace. The cast is led by the ever-impressive Edgerton (Animal Kingdom), and at no stage does the style and pacing indicate that this is a film from a debut director.
It's early days, but we may well have here a contender for the best Aussie film of 2012. Don't miss it!
9:44 PM, 15th September, 2012
Seated next to each other on a flight home, Margot (Williams) and Daniel (Kirby), meet and casually, and quirkily, flirt. They share a taxi, only to discover that they live on the same street, across from one another. Awkwardly, Margot admits that she is married and they part. From this initial meeting, Take This Waltz delves into an exploration of forbidden attraction and the consequences of desire.
Margot loves her husband Lou (Rogen) and he loves her; their marriage is cute, safe and quiet. However, she finds herself constantly tempted by the proximity of the refreshing Daniel. She is torn between familiarity and the habitual, and the temptation of new and erotically charged possibilities.
Oscar-nominated writer/director Sarah Polley returns with Take This Waltz and, with an adorably soft and awkward manner, explores themes of melancholy, ennui and infidelity. She avoids the clichéd pitfalls of the Hollywood 'love triangle' and brings a profundity and humanity to all involved. Michelle Williams, as usual, is excellent; her natural charm and beauty engages us to sympathise with Margot. Seth Rogen brings depth and maturity to the dorky, likeable, but oblivious Lou.
An undeniably cute, hipster film, lavish with colour and music, Take This Waltz is delightful, sad and funny.