It's Complicated Review

“...Streep Sexy At 60”

October 17th, 2010

For me, it was an aptly complicated experience seeing Nancy Meyer's It's Complicated. I did not hesitate in seeing her latest on screen venture.

In her latest piece, Meyer's has Meryl Streep playing Jane, a baker who after 10 years of being a divorcée has taken control of her life, is about to start major renovations to her house, and then out of the blue, has an affair with her ex husband Jake (Alec Baldwin,awesome and with verry funny scenes). But at the same time, she starts to fall for her divorced architect (Steve Martin) and thus is born the decision of who to pick.

It's Meyer's characters that are of particular interest. She creates perfectly flawed, vulnerable and detailed people. What's also interesting about these characters is that we see the reasoning behind their affluence. Similar to Father of the Bride, Baby Boom, What Women Want and Something's Gotta Give, the main characters are successful people. But in these films, we see their workplaces, thus establishing a plausible logic behind the rather large affluent surroundings that the characters exist in. In It's Complicated, Jane is a baker. We learn that Jane went to Paris in her early 20s for a short cooking course and ended up staying on as an apprentice baker. We see Jane make copious amounts of food, including the start to finish process of the makings of a chocolate croissant. This placement of food, which could possibly be a character of the film itself, features a commonality with Streep's other 2009 release, Nora Ephron's Julie and Julia. And the food looks delectable and irresistible too! The three stars of the film shine. There are scenes that remind me of this 180 degree turn of the feminist film "male triple gaze" theory, with Baldwin being the one who is gazed upon, and not necessarily as a sex symbol, but at a point of amusement and comic relief. Diane Keaton's nude 3 second appearance in Something's Gotta Give can slightly be compared, in so far as the comic relief idea, but the difference is that she looked great, whereas Baldwin's character is shown to be the result of 10 years without Meryl Streep's character. Steve Martin for the most part of the film plays the straight guy, with the exception of one hilarious drug induced scene, and it is wonderful to see Martin almost playing against type. Both he and Baldwin bravely show such deep unexpected vulnerability, and thus create the decision of Streep's character seem all the more challenging. Streep herself, is a powerhouse too and proves why she is the best in the field. So while it was a complicated experience seeing It's Complicated, there were no complications at all in sitting back and being entertained by the best.

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