Movies / Home Theatre

Ruby Sparks – A Meta Fiction of Love

By Hervé St-Louis
February 16, 2013 - 10:30

Former teen prodigy and novelist Calvin Weir-Fields (Paul Dano) dreams about the perfect girlfriend and writes about her in his first new novel since his breakthrough book written years ago, under the advice of his psychologists. However, Ruby Sparks (Zoe Kazan), the girl of his dreams becomes real and starts living in his house one day, after leaving some of her personal belongings a few days earlier. How will Calvin deal with this girl he created and whose destiny he controls?

Ruby Sparks was a lovely film that I watched one day after Valentine’s Day. In hindsight, I’d say, this would have been a perfect movie dealing with issues of control and love and how to let go and let the person one loves be free. The other part of Ruby Sparks that I enjoyed a lot was the part where Zoe Kazan and Paul Dano, a real life couple acted in this movie together, while being directed by another couple, Jonathan Dayton and Valerie Faris. The novelty aspect of the film doesn’t end here. Kazan is the actual writer of the script, making the film a meta-fiction on several levels.

But the Woody Allen-like reflexivity is not the only feature of this film. Several questions about the nature of love and how people imagine the most perfect beings in their lovers only to ignore or avoid those parts of people we don’t appreciate is a constant issue addressed by this intelligent and sensitive chick film. Yeah, I know, I must be somewhat sexists to label this film a chick film. Well, I enjoyed this chick film, although at first I didn’t know what to expect, and avoid watching the screener provided by Fox Home Video months ago out of fear.

This film made me think about my own reactions to others in the world and see that letting go and appreciating people’s values as they are and not trying to change the ones you love, be they lovers, family and friends is the best way to handle life and be at peace. Calving is not a tyrant but he does abuse his power over Ruby several times, whether he scripts her reactions or not. To some level, this aspect of Kazan’s script is one dimensional and make for easily digestible commentary on relationships for a mass audience. But just because there is little second reading material involved, doesn’t mean that a move set up as a pun within a pun can’t teach an old dog new tricks.

Rating: 8 /10

Last Updated: May 19, 2020 - 12:25

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