Not quite drama, not quite comedy, not quite romance, this gossamer first feature by Hans Canosa is one of those seemingly wafer-thin chamber pieces that seep pleasurably into you the morning after. Not entirely by chance, two nameless old flames, played by Aaron Eckhart and Helena Bonham Carter, meet at a New York wedding a decade after they parted less than amicably. Inevitably they spend the night together, but sex, ordinarily the climax of such a setup, comes fairly early on and plays second fiddle to endless gabbing about then and now and what went right and wrong. This would get really old, really fast, were it not for Gabrielle Zevin’s funny, fluid screenplay and Canosa’s deft use of split screen—often the laziest of thematic shorthands—to show us not only this couple’s skittish history and their equally checkered present lives, but the ebb and flow of their ambivalent attraction. Carter gives a wise and wonderfully rueful performance, Eckhart can do smug bastard in his sleep, and though the movie is occasionally too clever-talky for its own good, it has the authentic ring of an elegy for love lost when one partner grows up while the other runs in place.
This article from the Village Voice Archive was posted on August 1, 2006