Certified Copy

Certified Copy ★★★★½

It'd be stupid of us to ruin our lives for an ideal.

This is a sad yet beautiful, realistic yet enchanting, familiar yet thought-provoking look at a couple trying, the day after their 15th wedding anniversary, to rekindle the dying flame of love. Or are they?

Told in a single day in picturesque Tuscany, weaving in and out of conversations with each other, residents and tourists alike - in English, French and Italian - the film captures a contained whirlwind of beauty, love, art and culture. The settings are dreamlike, but the main characters seem too jaded to notice anymore.

There is a lot of honest and genuine dialogue throughout the film. One line in particular will resonate with many: "You see... if we were a bit more tolerant of each other's weaknesses, we'd be less alone. Don't you think?" These questions slowly reveal more and more as we the viewers piece together what might have gone wrong along the way. Clashing personalities? Conflicting points of view? Misaligned ambitions? These puzzle pieces might mean different things to different viewers, and the finished puzzle might not be the same. On its surface, this could just be a simple romantic drama, but as its title implies, there is a chance that what we're seeing is only pretending to be something it's not, which leads you to rethink what you initially thought a certain puzzle piece might have meant.

Even the end credits are a thing of beauty: cast and crew scroll while the sun sets, the birds sing and the bells peal in one of many wonderfully framed shots.

If you prefer movies that leave no room for interpretation, then Certified Copy is not for you. This film asks more questions than it answers. Alludes to more than it clarifies. Demands more than it gives. But the finished puzzle - whatever its form - will be that much more rewarding.

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