“What if” Movie Talk/Review (Some spoilers)
I wanted to see this movie the minute I saw the preview. While the concept was promising, I was incredibly pumped about the casting. I really love Daniel Radcliffe (I’m a profound Harry Potter nerd). Despite my bias, I’m still going to mention that Radcliffe’s acting was superb in this movie. I enjoyed his line delivery and he was entirely relatable and charming. Also, I was interested in seeing Zoe Kazan’s performance because I really enjoyed the movie she starred in called “Ruby Sparks”. As a writer I love writeresque movies like “Stranger Than Fiction” and “Ruby Sparks” because they make me jealous that I didn’t think of the concept in the first place. Both movies have genius plots that really make you think and their character development is phenomenal.
A lot of people have mentioned that this is a movie about friendzoning, (I wrote a blog about Friendzoning recently) while I do feel like this was an element of the movie it wasn’t the focus of the film. The film, in my opinion, was about growing up and getting your act together in your mid twenties. That’s probably why I liked this movie so much! I didn’t expect the film to have an indie feel, but I was glad it did. In my experience, a lot of indie movies have unpredictable endings, so I was unsure of what was going to happen or how the characters truly felt until the very end.
*Some spoilers, don’t read further if you don’t want to know what happens.*
“What If” delved into the daily lives of Wallace (Radcliffe) and Chantry (Kazan) from a fair standpoint. What I mean by that is, I felt sympathetic to both parties. This movie differentiated itself because the story was told equally from both the male and female perspective. I genuinely could see myself in both characters and making similar decisions. Chantry and Wallace were genuinely intrigued with one another from the beginning. While Chantry had purely “friendship” motives she couldn’t deny that her feelings for Wallace were simply confusing. She really did love her boyfriend and wanted to be with him, but when she was with Wallace she was the closest to being herself. If it were me, I know it would be terribly difficult to admit to myself that the guy I was living with and was dating for five years-didn’t make me feel like me. Chantry is outraged when Wallace tells her that he likes her more than a friend. Wallace also mentions that Chantry has given him mixed signals. The line of friendship and relationship can be a difficult line to manage sometimes when you’re lonely.
Wallace, on the other hand, sort of had mixed feelings from the start. When Chantry mentions she has a boyfriend he automatically “loses” Chantry’s number. I can’t decide if this is noble (Since he obviously has feelings for Chantry already) or if it’s jerkish. However, I can’t deny that I’ve totally been there and done that before. Ah, the fine line of friendship and relationship is present again. From the sounds and looks of it, Wallace hasn’t had a real connection to anyone really in the past year or so. Allan (Chantry’s cousin and Wallace’s best friend) mentions in the first five minutes that Wallace has hardly been out of the house all year and is still heartbroken. We can tell that Wallace is mildly depressed and Chantry is his first real connection to getting out there again. When Wallace begins to hang out with Chandry we automatically see a difference in him and he seems to be happier. Allan is constantly nagging Wallace about Chandry because Allan is worried about Wallace’s intentions with her, but the topic is ignored or disputed. Allan, the audience and even Wallace know that Wallace’s feelings for Chandry aren’t chaste but I did feel sorry for him because he doesn’t want to feel this way. To an extent Wallace isn’t interested in Chandry romantically, he’s purely a happier version of himself with her. She understands him and he understands her.
Both Wallace and Chandry are at fault when it comes down to it. Chandry did send out some mixed signals and Wallace did have other motives from the very beginning. Allan mentions that love is messy and sometimes it’s necessary in order to find “the one”. I am on the fence about that idea. I think that feelings can come out of nowhere for someone. Love isn’t always a concrete feeling. Chantry seemed to really love her boyfriend. He was there first, she knew what their relationship was and admitting that there’s someone better suited for you is hard. Intentionally breaking up a relationship is wrong, but who can argue with chemistry? If it’s there it’s there. What do you do with it?
I really loved this movie. It’s believable, it’s genuine and honest. Let me know what you thought. Do you think all is fair in love and war?
Posted on August 22, 2014, in Past Entries and tagged all is fair in love and war, daniel radcliffe, film, friend, friendzoning, Harry Potter, independent film, indie, love, movie, movie review, relationships, spoilers, what if. Bookmark the permalink. 1 Comment.