A small gem of a film,“The One I Love” is one of the strangest yet highly entertaining love stories in some time. When the credits roll you might be scratching your head with a slightly bemused look on your face, but watching “The One I Love” will be time well spent.
Directed by Charlie McDowell and written by Justin Lader, “The One I Love” revolves around a couple, Ethan and Sophie (Mark Duplass and Elisabeth Moss), trying to get their marriage back on track. The frustrations about their relationship come out in a session with their therapist (Ted Danson). He suggests that they get away from it all and spend time alone in a retreat he’s used to help other couples in the past, to, as he puts it, “help them reset the reset button.” So it’s off to the country they go. Once there, Ethan discovers that there’s also a guest house on the premises. After an evening of smoking pot and drinking wine, Sophie decides to explore the guest house and has quite the experience. Separately Ethan also visits the house and he, too, has an unexpected occurrence. But what did happen to both of them? That’s the confusion, mystery and pleasure of “The One I Love.”
“The One I Love” is cast impeccably. Duplass and Moss really connect as a couple. Duplass’ character is a bit more of a skeptic than Moss’ and he plays that role flawlessly. Moss has the ability to be “sharp…” someone with an edge… and still make the audience root for her character. In Sophie, she has found just the right part for her talents. Ted Danson’s role is small, but as the therapist he is spot-on.
“The One I Love” can be confusing, but the characters are just as confused as the audience which makes the film so engaging. Like them, you either roll with it…or not. The film ends with the Mama’s and Papa’s “Dedicated to the One I Love.” For some reason, that seems to be the perfect concluding touch.
“The One I Love” is in theatres and available On Demand.