If you’re already married, contemplating marriage or in a long-term, committed relationship and planning to remain there, I have one word for you during this Film Awards season: Amour.
Amour – nominated last week for a Best Picture Oscar – is a movie about an elderly, long-married couple in which the wife is dying. That’s not a spoiler; it’s the film’s premise. And it cuts right to the chase about what it’s like to grow old with someone.
Suffice it to say that if you thought On Golden Pond was depressing, fasten your seat belts. This is a refreshingly honest, unvarnished and difficult-to-watch film about love and aging.
There aren’t enough about those, if you ask me. Away From Her – a bittersweet 2006 meditation on a man losing his wife (played by an utterly ethereal Julie Christie) to Alzheimer’s Disease – certainly counts. As does – in my book at least – last year’s vastly under-appreciated Iron Lady, in which Meryl Streep depicts Margaret Thatcher in her twilight years not as ruthless and unstinting but as frightened, uncertain, and nostalgic for her dead husband.
In general, however, when we think about films that present us with the dark underbelly of marriage, we conjure up things like Judd Apatow’s new auto-biographic comedy, This is Forty. I haven’t seen that film yet, but I already know that when I do, I’ll be going primarily to share a laugh with my husband (and all of us who’ve grown up in the Age of Apatow) over what it’s like to be married and middle-aged.
Read the rest of this post at The Washington Post’s She The People blog…
Image: Old Couple…in Amsterdam Tram by basheem via Flickr under a Creative Commons license