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DVD Review: Blue Valentine

May 10, 2011

Blue Valentine – An Alliance Films’ Release

DVD Release Date: May 10th, 2011

Rated 18A for sexual content, coarse languge and nudity

Running time: 112 minutes

Derek Cianfrance (dir.)

Derek Cianfrance (writer)

Cami Delavigne (writer)

Joey Curtis (writer)

Grizzley Bear (music)

Ryan Gosling as Dean

Michelle Williams as Cindy

Faith Wladyka as Frankie

John Doman as Jerry

© 2010 Starz Media, LLC. All Rights Reserved. © 2010 Hamilton Film Productions, LLC. All Rights Reserved. Distributed exclusively in Canada by Alliance Films. All Rights Reserved.

Our reviews below:


Blue Valentine DVD Review By John C.

** (out of 4)

The narrative of Derek Cianfrance’s Blue Valentine is an interesting one.  We glide back and forth between past and present, believably watching as a relationship develops and eventually falls apart between the childlike Dean (Ryan Gosling) and the depressed Cindy (Michelle Williams).  In the past, they take solace in each other as an escape from their mundane lives.  In the present, they’re married and raising a daughter together.  There are few big differences between beginning and end, rather just selected moments that happened now and then.

The film feels real as we are observers to their often unbearably sad situation.  So real, in fact, that audiences will surely wonder the exact point of having these images captured on film.  Gosling and Williams give strong and believable performances, but their characters are drab and the gritty look of the movie adds a needlessly depressing haze to even the supposedly happy scenes.  We feel for the characters, but if we saw these people fighting in real life, would surely be cautious as to not get ourselves involved.

The DVD includes deleted scenes, a ‘making-of’ featurette, as well as commentary with director Cianfrance and co-editor Jim Helton.


Blue Valentine DVD Review by Erin V.  

** (out of 4)

Blue Valentine follows the lives of Cindy (Michelle Williams) and Dean (Ryan Gosling), a couple who are struggling in their relationship, but are staying together for the sake of their young daughter Frankie.  This indie drama plays out a slow pace, telling its story through frequent flashbacks to a better time at the beginning of their relationship.

Ultimately, it may be believable to some, but to me Blue Valentine ends up feeling overlong, and too drab to want to watch for almost two hours.  Oftentimes it is filmed with an inherent grittiness, and I must say, despite the title, this is not a first-date movie.


Blue Valentine DVD Review By Nicole

**1/4 (out of 4)

Blue Valentine tells a story of a failing marriage.  Dean (Ryan Gosling) and Cindy (Michelle Williams) are an ill-matched couple, who attempt to save their marriage by going on a second honeymoon at a cheap motel.  Told through flashbacks, we also see the history of their troubled relationship.

Blue Valentine is a downer from the beginning.  The shaky camera work and raunchy, 18A-rated sexual scenes add to the grittiness of the film.  However, the performances here makes Blue Valentine worth seeing from a techinical standpoint.


Blue Valentine DVD Review By Maureen

** (out of 4)

Not every love story has a happy ending.  In fact, some of them can leave you feeling downright blue.  Blue Valentine is for the most part a depressing story of a love slowly unraveling until only a thread of connection remains.

Ryan Gosling plays Dean, a well-meaning but immature man who drinks and smokes a lot, works only when he has to and adores his wife Cindy (Michelle Williams) and their sweet daughter Frankie (Faith Wladyka).  Cindy is the responsible one in the family, working in a hospital and showing increasing signs of resentment at home.  Through a series of flashbacks we get to see that neither Dean or Cindy are perfect, their love was genuine and the circumstances of what brought them together basically explains why they might eventually drift apart.

Blue Valentine could have been more likable.  The lead actors are both excellent and believable.  However, the story is slow-moving, many of the scenes gritty and unpleasent and much of the camera work needlessly shaky.  Truthfully, I found it hard to like or care for Dean and Cindy.  If it weren’t for Gosling and Williams Blue Valentine would feel pointless.  Check it out only for the leads.


Blue Valentine DVD Review By Tony

*** (out of 4)

Blue Valentine is an intense look into the rocky marriage of Dean (Ryan Gosling) and Cindy (Michelle Williams), both in the present and in flashbacks. Though both decent people in their own ways, their flaws and mismatched backgrounds put their relationship at risk.

The script and performances, shot with a sometimes shaky hand-held camera in extreme closeup, are well edited and so true to life that we feel we are in a documentary, which, though often bordering on banal and certainly disturbing at times, is admirable.


Consensus: Despite strong and believable performances from Ryan Gosling and Michelle Williams at its heart, Blue Valentine is depressing in story and gritty in tone as it offers a stark look at a failing relationship.  **1/4 (Out of 4)

One Comment leave one →
  1. Niccy permalink
    January 9, 2016 12:32 am

    This was one of the WORST movies I’ve EVER SEEN!!! This movie was EXTREMELY depressing, and I could see why people wanted to kill themselves after watching it….

    I was expecting this film to be spectacular (considering Ryan Gosling and Michelle Williams were the stars), and was completely shocked that I had to FORCE myself to keep watching it until the very end (the best part).

    The storyline was insanely slow, to the point of boredom, resulting in constant loss of interest…..


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