Wednesday 10 October 2012

Review: Ruby Sparks

CAUTION: Yen's blog contains harsh language and even harsher notions of propriety. Reader discretion is advised.

Ruby Sparks poster

Ruby Sparks
104 mins / Dir. Jonathan Dayton & Valerie Faris

When Calvin, a brilliant young writer, fears he may have peaked too soon and struggles to create anything, he meets Ruby who turns his world upside down. She is everything he's dreamed about...

Ruby Sparks isn't the chucklefest the trailer might suggest, but it's all the stronger for that. The jokes are there, but there's a greater sense of confusion as young Calvin tries to get his head around what he's created. He doesn't really succeed. The film is definitely kooky™, and quite often borderline irritating, but it's also very apparent that it's completely intentional (in fact, there isn't a story without that). It's difficult to define what's subtext when the story is entirely about subtext. The line between fantasy and reality is so blurred that I applaud the screenplay's (and the characters') refusal to rationalise or explain away the surreal events that unfold. If you try and put any of Ruby Sparks into a real-world context, you run the risk of missing the point of the film.

With strong performances from the leads and the supporting characters living up to their job description, it's beautifully believable for a story that isn't meant to be believable. While I didn't find it as emotionally engaging as Wallflower, it's still absolutely fascinating, and a joy to watch unfold.


'Kooky, but without taking it to Deschanel-levels. I approve wholeheartedly.'

• ^^^ That's dry, British humour, and most likely sarcasm or facetiousness.

• This is a personal blog. The views and opinions expressed here represent my own thoughts (at the time of writing) and not those of the people, institutions or organisations that I may or may not be related with unless stated explicitly.

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