Marriage Story review


Provided by Netflix

A scene from the movie Marriage story, produced by Netflix in 2019.

Maya Kogulan, Arts and Entertainment editor

Since its founding, Hollywood has an obsession over one thing: Romance. The same classic love story has been rewritten thousands of times, and yet some people still can’t get enough of them. As much as I want to judge those types of people, deep down, I am one of them. I love romantic movies. I love watching two completely different people fall in love, overcome obstacles, and ultimately have a happy ending. 

When I saw “Marriage Story” in my recommended on Netflix, I thought it would be a nice  feel-good movie that I could enjoy after a hard-day. However, it did the complete opposite, it broke me. To put it simply, “Marriage Story” is the antithesis of your typical romantic movie. It is a movie about a marriage deteriorating. The film follows Charlie, a director of a successful NYC theater company, and Nicole, a former teen film star, as they go through a separation with a child. The couple initially decides that it would be best for their family if they go through the process without lawyers. Charlie hopes that the couple will continue to live in New York after the divorce, therefore he can continue to work on his Broadway show and take an active role in his son’s life. However, Nicole intends to take their son to LA to be with her mother and pursue her television career. The dispute over their future serves as the catalyst to their messy divorce equipped with expensive lawyers and years of pent up feelings.

“Marriage Story” is raw and intimate. The actors, Scarlet Johannson and Adam Driver, are able to beautifully translate the feeling of deep-rooted feelings of love and hate that come out during the process of separation. I cried during their intense fight scenes and laughed at awkward quirks of their dysfunctional family. The director, Noah Baumbach, is able to tell both sides of the divorce fairly by exposing both their flaws and their best qualities. By the end of the movie, I couldn’t pick a side because I had developed sympathy for both their situations. 

“Marriage Story” is my favorite Netflix movie of the year. Its unconventional approach to a movie about love allows viewers to see the beauty within divorce.