Plot: What’s it about?
William Borgens (Greg Kinnear) is still very much stuck in love (hence the title). He still sets a place for his Ex-wife at the table for Thanksgiving dinner, he sneaks onto her property and spies at her through her window. His wife Erica (Jennifer Connelly) has moved on with her life (or so it seems). She left him for a younger man a few years earlier. William has a son Rusty (Nat Wolff) and a daughter Sam (Lilly Collins). Sam is home from college and Rusty lives with his dad. Instead of asking his kids to get jobs, William instead pays them to keep journal logs. William is a successful writer and his children seem headed down a successful path with writing as well. The film follows each character’s separate stories throughout the film. We see each of them starting new relationships and the ups and downs they go through over the course of a year. Each character has a secret, a secret that we eventually learn as the film progresses. After Rusty defends a girl at a party after her boyfriend pushes her to the ground, the two of them begin a relationship. The girl is Kate (Liana Liberato) and Rusty secretly admires. He writes poetry and she is his secret crush. The two of them grow closer throughout the film and we learn a good deal about her past life. Sam is repeatedly hit on by Lou (Logan Lerman), he wants a serious relationship while she is more accustomed to having one-night stands. Lou is persistent and the two of them ultimately begin a serious relation. Kristen Bell shows up as Tricia. She and William have hooked up for some time. Their relation is strictly sexual as Tricia is married. This is the basic outline of the film. We follow each of these characters on their respective journey.
Writer/Director Josh Boone does a nice job here of making us care about these characters even if we don’t agree with all the things they do. I appreciate its attention to character development and the way the story unfolds. It carefully avoids getting overly corny and dramatic, instead letting the situations play out naturally. I was very involved throughout the entire running time. The cast all do a fine job here and each separate plot-line gets enough attention to not feel short-changed. I liked that some of the revelations help explain why certain characters act the way they do. Another nice touch was that the kids (Rusty and Sam) actually look like their mother (Connelly). A lot of movies often cast children that look nothing like their parents, that’s not the case here. The two of them certainly favor their mother more, but the resemblance to Kinnear is definitely there. There’s a reason this film didn’t receive a wider release. I am not entirely sure, but if I had to guess, I would say that it puts emphasis on story and character over cynical jokes and low-brow humor. Sometimes smaller stories aren’t a big sell and that would explain why Stuck in Love received limited play in theaters, at least domestically. Regardless of the reasons, here it is on Bluray and DVD for our viewing pleasure. If a mature, adult drama that’s well written and well acted seems like something you’d enjoy then by all means give it a watch. I enjoyed it quite a bit. I wasn’t crazy about the music in the film, but that’s a minor complaint in an otherwise great film.
Video: How’s it look?
The AVC encoded (1.85:1) is very nice. There are many interior scenes, often showing a great deal of different colors. They all come out very strong and deep. Greg Kinnear sports a scruffy beard the entire film and a few individual hairs stand out with strong definition. The colors are all natural and well balanced. There’s a wedding sequence in the film that also gives way to many colors, there are white flowers in the background, colorful dresses, all displaying a great amount of detail. Facial details are also strong, pores come through on a few faces and flesh tones seem accurate as well. This is a great transfer to accompany the film.
Audio: How’s it sound?
The track here is a Dolby True HD one. It presents the film accordingly. This is a smaller budgeted film so don’t expect anything to robust, but it doesn’t need it either. It does justice to the film with nice sounding vocals and dialogue being clear. There are a lot of songs in this movie and they make good use of the rear channels and add a nice bass. I didn’t care for much of the music, but at least it comes through nicely here. There is some nice background noise during a few sequences but the front channels do get most of the use. Since the film is more dialogue-driven that was to be expected. I am pleased with this track.
Supplements: What are the extras?
A rather sparse selection of extras are found on this two disc set:
- Audio Commentary – This track is with Writer/Director Josh Boone and actor Nat Wolff. It’s an enjoyable track for fans of the film.
- The making of Stuck in Love (27:42) – Gives us a nice, detailed look at how the film came to be and includes several interviews with the cast. It’s worth a look.
- Previews – We get a few trailers here, including one for Stuck in love.
- DVD Copy