February 12, 2020,

Did they get the title right?

Netflix’s highly anticipated film, Marriage Story, is getting a lot of buzz. That’s great to hear.

Isn’t the story really more about divorce?

The global news source CNN seems to think so.

In their review cnn.com muses, ““Marriage Story” is an ironic title for writer-director Noah Baumbach’s latest foray into family dysfunction, since “Divorce Story” would be more accurate. There’s method to that, however, in this look at how a couple reaches the point of divided harmony, with Adam Driver and Scarlett Johansson portraying the conflicted spouses.”

Marriage Story is a 2019 drama film written, directed, and produced by Noah Baumbach.

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It stars Scarlett Johansson and Adam Driver, with Laura Dern, Alan Alda, Ray Liotta, Julie Hagerty, and Merritt Wever in supporting roles.

The film follows a married couple, one a stage director and the other an actress (Driver and Johansson), going through a coast-to-coast divorce.

When we read about it, we were intrigued because our experience with Netflix originals is that they are high quality projects even though it is hard for most of us to relate to the daily lives of Stage Directors and Actresses.

Marriage Story received critical acclaim, with particular praise for Baumbach’s screenplay and direction, as well as its relatability, and the performances of Johansson, Driver, and Dern.

It was chosen by the American Film Institute and the National Board of Review as one of the top ten films of 2019.

Among other accolades it received six nominations at the 92nd Academy Awards, including Best Picture, Best Original Screenplay, Best Actor (Driver), Best Actress (Johansson), and won the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress (Dern). The film also received a leading six nominations at the 77th Golden Globe Awards, including Best Motion Picture – Drama, as well as five at the 73rd British Academy Film Awards.

For her performance, Ms. Dern won the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress, the Golden Globe Award for Best Supporting Actress – Motion Picture, the BAFTA Award for Best Actress in a Supporting Role, and the Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Supporting Role.

Hail to the queen.

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Netflix proudly adds that it is an “incisive and compassionate look at a marriage coming apart and a family staying together.”

It seems to have touched a national nerve.

As reported by pbs.org, “The number of U.S. marriage ceremonies peaked in the early 1980s, when almost 2.5 million marriages were recorded each year. Since then, however, the total number of people getting married has fallen steadily. Now only about two million marriages happen a year, a drop of almost half a million from their peak.

As a result, barely more than half of adults in the U.S. say they’re living with a spouse. It is the lowest share on record, and down from 70 percent in 1967.”

The fascinating article adds that the drop in marriages is even more dramatic when the rapid growth in the U.S. population is taken into account. In fact, the marriage rate is the lowest in at least 150 years.

The article cites many reasons for the decline but the fear of getting divorced is one of the hidden truths that few publicly want to discuss.

Why look at the glass as half-empty before you even give it a try?

After watching marriage story, hopefully you don’t want to throw the glass against the wall.

Or at the Producer.

Here is the view from the standpoint of a divorce attorney.

Netflix’s Marriage Story is Actually a Pretty Accurate Divorce Story

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NEW YORK, Dec. 11, 2019 /PRNewswire/ — Val Kleyman, Esq., a New York divorce lawyer and principal of The Kleyman Law Firm, commented on the accuracy of Noah Baumbach’s Marriage Story, a recently released film that depicts divorce and divorce lawyers. Laura Dern and Ray Liotta play aggressive, high-powered Hollywood divorce attorneys representing each half of the couple at the movie’s center, and Alan Alda plays a more wholesome divorce lawyer initially retained by the husband.

“Overall, I think this movie did an excellent job showing the struggles that people face during divorce and the downside of acrimonious litigation,” Kleyman said.

According to Kleyman, many couples going through divorce start off with a genuine desire to work out the terms amicably and protect their children as much as possible from the intrusive process of divorce. However, many experience similar struggles as the characters in the movie and do not complete the process cooperatively, ending up in contentious and expensive litigation.

“There is a thin line between uncontested and highly contested divorce and unfortunately that line gets crossed too many times and too quickly. This movie accurately shows that once the line is crossed, most spouses find themselves slinging mud – through their attorneys – in each other’s direction, abandoning who they are and neglecting to consider each other, their children, and marital assets,” Kleyman says.

For Kleyman, the attorney characters in the movie represent three extreme categories of divorce lawyers. Laura Dern’s character is a type of a divorce lawyer who uses a friendly approach and blurs the lines between her job as a lawyer and a personal therapist. Ray Liotta’s character shows an aggressive type fixated on winning and his ego. While Alan Alda plays a divorce lawyer who is honest and soft-spoken yet lacks the chops to stand up and fight.

“The movie does a good job showing three very distinct approaches and types of divorce lawyers that one can encounter. While I certainly recognized many lawyers I personally know in each character, what is not shown in this movie is a hybrid between the three personalities. There are many great divorce lawyers who have solid counseling skills and can lead their clients towards a collaborative divorce while remaining equally able to litigate aggressively if the case calls for war,” said Kleyman. “Personally, I think that lawyers and firms who are able to offer clients all three approaches on an as-needed basis are best prepared for the drama, trials and tribulations of divorce.”

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Val Kleyman is the founder of The Kleyman Law Firm, a matrimonial law firm in New York handling complex, contested, and high conflict divorces. The Kleyman Law Firm is located at 45 Broadway, Suite 1500, New York, NY. For more info go to www.NYC-DivorceLawyer.com, email: 230924@email4pr.com or call 212-401-1977.

SOURCE Val Kleyman, Esq.

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