Kate and Charlie are a young married couple whose bond is built on a mutual love of music, laughter and… drinking. When Kate decides to get sober, her new lifestyle brings troubling issues to the surface and calls into question her relationship with Charlie.
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Lo, here's an increasingly rare specimen for you: an exercise in scruffily sincere, Sundance-certified Amerindiecana that won't make you cringe in embarrassment for the whole superannuated species. It may, however, make you cringe in embarrassment by striking too close to home. Its uneasy relationship with the creeping self-satisfaction of recovery narratives lends nuanced irony to the qualified triumph of sobriety.
Sensitive portrait of alcoholism about an elementary school teacher whose hard drinking ways lead her into a web of lies and bad decisions. Occasionally veers to far into indie quirk territory, but always corrects itself before it's too late. Mary Elizabeth Winstead's excellent performance is both winning and heartbreaking.
One thing that this little slice of the wet life does quite well, aided by Winstead and Paul's warm performances, is ably and efficiently set up a distinction between the wreck that is the main couple's home and the characters themselves. Paul's character isn't a bad drunk, per se, but the life he shares with Winstead is a bad situation, and that distinction makes the final scenes quite effective as she breaks away
Very simple story but done extremely well due to it's acting and restrained direction. Side note: she's a drunk alcoholic and I don't get to see her naked ONCE? Fuck this. I had to see my dad stumble around naked several times when he was drinking (one time it lasted the length of the business card scene in "American Psycho") but I can't see Mary Elizabeth Winstead naked for two seconds? Total horse shit.
There were some beautiful scenes, but overall, I think the hype I built up in my mind for this film greatly overpowered the film itself. I was disappointed. I love Aaron Paul and Mary Winstead, both, but oh well.
I'll admit, what mainly drew me to "Smashed" was Aaron Paul and his brilliant performance in Breaking Bad which I'm a huge fan of. But the concept of the film is what interested me as well. I know that Mary Elizabeth Winstead hasn't had the best of roles in the past, but it seems Kate is a great character for her. The path to recovery isn't an easy one and she shows just how good she can be in this challenging role.