Published: Tue, May 08, 2018
Worldwide | By Stella Potter

Tully takes a mixed look at motherhood

Tully takes a mixed look at motherhood

Cody's script is an enjoyable piece of writing, containing the sort of witty rejoinders and acerbic comments that made her screenplays for Juno and Young Adult such a delight.

Charlize Theron hits the stage to speak during a special Q&A while attending TimesTalks ScreenTimes Presents: Tully held on Wednesday (May 2) in New York City. "And to be honest, it probably would have been a better commercial impulse to do something like that because the smaller more intimate stories are being told on cable and streaming right now".

Reitman's last few films have been disappointments.

The movie's only scene including Marlo, Tully and Drew at about the halfway point shakes things up in a huge way and only after the movie concludes does it make any sense which only increases the audacity quotient while you're actually watching it.

For Tully, Theron packed on almost 50 pounds - eating In-N-Out Burger for breakfast and cold Mac and cheese late at night - to play Marlo, an end-of-her-tether mother of three (including an infant). Initially, Marlo resists the charms of Tully, but before long, walls come down. Marlo gets through the day with a forward-facing smile that turns into a derisive sneer behind closed doors, but that careful balance is about to be thrown entirely off. This is a welcomed new addition seeing as Marlo's relationship with her husband Drew (Ron Livingston) has stalled. As a 20-something living in Brooklyn, Marlo was a free spirit unburdened by so-called responsibilities ― but what happens to the person who, at 40, realizes she traded fleeting childlike liberation for the permanence of a nuclear family? But that newborn's crying is as aurally violent as anything you'll hear in a disaster flick or an action movie. Reitman directs a script from Cody, with the supporting cast including Maddie Dixon-Poirier, Lia Frankland, Asher Miles Fallica, Joshua Pak, Elaine Tan, Gameela Wright, and more. The throughline from "The Graduate" to "Garden State" persists in countless movies ― so much so that, in "Young Adult", Mavis tells an old classmate of inferior social stature (Patton Oswalt), "But love conquers all". It's awkward, perceptive, real, and smart.

My second kid was around six or seven months old, so I was just coming out of that tunnel place where you're kind of feeling overwhelmed, and I had just seen a sliver of light.

And, given the degree of difficulty involved, I'd say she's entitled. The positive and assertive Tully talks her way in and Marlo's life goes through an immediate change. "I knew it was insane, and I knew that it would end eventually".

Awards wise, Tully may end up a long shot, but it deserves an Oscar push from Focus Features.

Theron is the picture's steady emotional heartbeat and her raw, unselfconscious portrayal nourishes supporting cast including a luminous turn from Davis. If nothing else, this is one of the gems of the first half of the year, so hopefully it's at least somewhat remembered come the precursor season.

Tully spits out lines like these throughout the film. "Everybody else is telling you it's this fucking blessing and it's great every single day-and if it's not, then you are just not good at it". If you're a fan of any of the three's work, this is one of their best, so keep that in mind. "As a location, we want (the depiction of motherhood) to be accurate in the same way that I think James Cameron would want the Titanic to look accurate". Things are never exactly what they seem here - but there's a deeper, more authentic story Reitman and Cody are interested in telling, even when - maybe especially when - the film veers toward fantasy. That one tackles politics, while this one tackles motherhood.

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