Except that’s not quite what happens. Like most therapy related movies the denouement is rushed to make the point – the problems in this marriage couldn’t be fixed in five days, surely? So when they do have sex again it’s not the fumble on the cinema back row, the champagne and strawberries or even the introspection and analysis that appear to be the catalyst. Instead it’s Jones’ fear of loneliness and the overbearing Annie Lennox singing “Why” on the soundtrack which is then dressed up as the answer to all their problems. Of course Jones still can’t admit to his hangups and Streep has developed a shrewish streak, but in the world of Hope Springs they’re finally shagging giving us the happy ending we want.
Streep and Jones make an interesting coupling. They’re at their best when the two of them are alone, relying on their physicality more than the dialogue, able to reveal intense and significant shared histories through a glance, the smallest of gestures or the briefest of touches. Unfortunately when they have to connect with other cast members, especially during the counselling, Jones plays the “I don’t want to be there” card so convincingly I thought he meant the film and Streep is working the facial tic for two – there’s one scene where I swear she was about to launch into her Shakespeare monologue she was emoting so much. Thankfully Carell has the balance right, projecting genuine concern with just the right touch of forcefulness when required – more – https://free-putlockers.com/country/Iran
Frankel doesn’t make his presence behind the camera known but there are some nice touches vis a vis the staging, with a story being told purely in the positions the lead couple take up at the counselling sessions. It’s a shames the mood is occasionally jarred by the over-insistent soundtrack, painfully on-the-nose it appears to have been selected with i-pod shuffle on a fifty something’s easy listening playlist.
Overall, in spite of all my misgivings, I did enjoy this movie. There are times in every relationship where you aren’t getting the sex (either frequency or variation) you want so the central conceit resonates. However the film is neither a knock out sex farce nor the tragedy of a disillusioned marriage that it could be and going either way on that may have improved the overall experience. I would wait until it’s showing on TV, and sit in front of it digesting a hearty meal. You might take 40 winks in the middle but the film doesn’t seem to mind and the effect of being woken up by Streep talking about oral sex can’t be underestimated.