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Aside from the bit about the pregnancy, this movie is perfect. I cannot think of a film that better captures the nuances of human intimacy and the emotional and physical journeys of relationships.

Brush with the familiar

There are so many things I loved about this movie. It’s winter. It’s the middle of nowhere. It’s lonely, but wanting.

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Abby tries to live and have fun despite the weight of guilt and the blinders of a terrible self image. “We accept the love we think we deserve,” as I heard recently in The Perks of Being a Wallflower. And she’s deeply loved… by her imaginary friend.

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Richard is a loner, always on the hunt for a perfect writing environment that doesn’t exist. He’s caught up on details, on not doing anything unless the end result is completely perfect. This doesn’t just apply to his novel: it’s the theme of his entire life. His imaginary friend doesn’t help much.

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There’s inspiration and misunderstanding, confessions and betrayals. Abby and Richard’s friendship looks forbidden on the outside, but I knew it could work. His relationship with his wife, though, was clearly broken. She was living with the assumption that her sensitive husband needed to change.

Richard Dunn: We could have had a baby, Claire! Why didn’t we have a baby? 
Claire Dunn: Why? Because you are a baby! You are an infant! You still have an imaginary friend! 
Richard Dunn: I just wanted a little warm thing. Something simple I could start with. A single relationship with a person that was new and pure. Where I could be me and they could be them, and that’s all that is expected, and we could build this world where there was some one else other than me to think about and be about.

This movie hurt, but I loved it. It felt so familiar. And oddly enough, I’ve been thinking a lot about imaginary friends lately.

I hope you watch it.

confessional

A little soda, a little whiskey, sip, repeat. There wasn’t much left of either, so I didn’t feel bad about emptying the bottles… until I stood up. But there was laundry to start, dishes to wash, a disarrayed existence to organize. I had laid on the couch for too long.

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The light on their faces: Mal is cragged, often shadowed, but strong, sad-eyed and kind. Kaylee is round, warm, and open. Sexuality and honesty. River is planed, underlit, eyes hooded. She’s a question. Simon works in angles as well, coolly handsome and hard to connect with - but ultimately he’s a romantic. Jayne doesn’t give a good goddamn how he’s lit. Zoe glows. She cannot help it. Wash is light, playful - often amongst his screens or slightly blown out by the sun of high atmosphere. Book is solid, solid through. Inara’s light is complex, like Mal’s. Hiding and beckoning.
Joss Whedon (Serenity: The Official Visual Companion)
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