(AUTHOR’S NOTE: These quick reviews will NOT replace the full reviews with cocktails. These will coincide with the full reviews when my work outside the blog really piles on so I can still produce some form of content. Enjoy!)
Distributed by my second favorite film distribution company NEON (Parasite, I Tonya, Portrait of a Lady on Fire), THE KILLING OF TWO LOVERS follows a couple with 4 kids agreeing to see other people in order to reevaluate their relationship, but the stress of the separation begins to take its toll.
There’s a lot to love in its simplistic approach to the concept of persevering love and self inadequatecy. I found the framing and the aspect ratio an interesting choice, choosing to host much of the movement in the bottom corner while giving plain view of the gorgeous rural mountainside. At times it almost felt like a home movie due to the squeezed image size, but I found it to fit the aesthetic nicely.
The dialogue and acting is fairly solid all around, with Clayne Crawford (Rectify) being an absolute standout as the loving but frustrated David. Yet the weak spots are noticeable (the daughter’s delivery was heavy handed at times) but the family felt genuine in their relationships, particularly because the kids in this are actually related.
The story didn’t go where I was expecting, taking a less stylized and intense approach than the trailer let on. While I respect this decision, I was left wanting more, feeling like only the surface has been scratched. Some will definitely hate the ending, but it surprised me more than anything. If I could recommend anything, don’t watch the trailer before going in. A blind experience will certainly give you a better experience.