Love stories are for girls. Ok so that is very contradictory and narrow minded of me, especially since so many of my favorite films are indeed love stories in one way or another. For this review, however, I will stick to my guns. Love stories are for girls. In the film Paper Heart, one girl, Charlene Yi, sets out to document what exactly it means to be in love, and weather or not she is capable of it. Along the way she meets many interesting characters who explain what love is to them, and the role it plays in the survival of any relationship (stay with me this one comes with a kicker).
Paper Heart very cleverly uses a documentary/narrative format that makes for a very interesting story. In her quest to travel the country interviewing bikers, lawyers, and everything in between Charlene is intermittently followed back to her home in Los Angeles as cameras capture her budding friendship with the man himself, Michael Cera (kicker, as promised). Ahhh Michael Cera. I could watch Michael blow up a beach ball and it would be funny for me. No beach balls are blown. However we do get to see Michael and Charlene (from here on out I will call her Char because I think we are to that point in our relationship) go shopping for groceries. Yes, it is everything you imagine.
The natural chemistry between Michael and Char is kinda awkward, but fantastic, and the random appearances of director Nicholas Jasonavec (played by Jake Johnson , seriously the actual director is played by an actual actor) and the camera crew make for some good laughs.
This is the second film that I have seen so far at Sundance (Humpday being the other) to incorporate an improved, “Curb Your Enthusiasm” approach to film. I do dig the natural flow that this style provides and I expect to see it a lot more in the upcoming years.
I do anticipate that this will be picked up for distribution on names alone. Along with the aforementioned Yi and Cera there are appearances from Seth Rogan, as well as a pretty cool fight scene including Jean Claude Van Damme and Stephen Segal (LIE). Check it out when you get a chance.