No more giant presents under the tree this weekend, at least in the form of new wide-release movies. Instead, there are some limited-release indie gems, all of them fascinated with human frailties and relationships, and all of them poised for possible Oscar glory over the next couple of months.
In Limited Release'Blue Valentine' (R)
Starring: Ryan Gosling, Michelle Williams
Directed by: Derek Gianfrance
What's It About? This romantic drama takes an intimate look at the relationship of a young couple (Gosling and Williams), both during the excitement and fear of their early courtship and a few years later during the bitterness and recrimination of their failing marriage.
Why Should You See It? Gosling and Williams both give awards-caliber performances of raw, occasionally shocking honesty and bravery in this drama, whose poignance stems from the contrast between the back and forth scenes of the couple both then and now. There was some controversy over the movie's handful of frank sexual moments, which almost earned it an NC-17, but this is one film where you can say that the sex scenes are not exploitative and really do serve the story.
You Might Like It If You Like: 'Revolutionary Road,' 'Eyes Wide Shut,' 'The Notebook'