The Story of Us
is about the fear of potential separation most marriages are supposed to experience. Personalities clash; identities blur; responsibilities weigh heavy. This, then, is an exploration of the Jordans, an average American couple who can't find any reason to stay together after 15 years. Once you get past the star power of Bruce Willis and Michelle Pfeiffer, there's a terrifically pithy script working for them that effectively manages to juggle the genre crossover of a comedy-drama. Several montages cover years of petty squabbling, raising two kids, and long silences. There are confessions to camera about who picked what fight, and flashbacks to time spent offloading with friends. These provide the comedic backbone, with director Rob Reiner hogging the best lines. The best gag and narrative device is a bedroom scene following a therapist's revelation that every couple goes to bed with their parents' way of thinking rattling around in their minds. Sure enough, the super-wide bed shows all six in hilarious fashion. Despite the general paranoid atmosphere that everyone's doomed, you can rest assured that the guy who brought you When Harry Met Sally
allows optimism to prevail.
On the DVD: Reiner's commentary is a little sporadic, but like the great stand-up comic he always seems to be, each comment is priceless. He explains how he hates acting, yet can't help himself. A 20-minute documentary interviews all the cast and also composer Eric Clapton, and they all give their pessimistic views on why relationships break down. Willis is in fine form telling us that it was "so much more challenging than running down a street with a gun and shouting"! The widescreen presentation is crisp, as is the 5.1 sound. One trailer rounds out the package. --Paul Tonks
After fifteen years of marriage, Ben (Bruce Willis) and Katie Jordan's (Michelle Pfeiffer) marriage has lost its spark, with the couple putting on a brave face for the benefit of their children, twelve-year-old Josh and ten-year-old Erin. While the kids are away at summer camp, Ben and Katie decide to try a trial separation: Ben moves out, and both are given a chance to reflect on where their marriage has gone wrong. However, attempts to reconcile - including counselling and dating - are far from successful, and the two parents are left wondering whether divorce is the only option left.
From the Back Cover
Vows, They're like New Years resolutions - easy to make and impossible to live up to. Award Winning film maker Rob Reiner (When Harry Met Sally) directs this romantic comedy which asks the question: Can marriage survive 15 years of marriage?
After 15 years together couple Ben (Willis) and Katie (Pfeiffer) are wrestling with the universal paradox: whay are the qualities that made them fall in love in the first place now the very things pulling them apart? Emotionally drained from their relationship, thay attend a trial separation while their chidren are at summer camp, but they come to realise that if they want it to work, they must keep trying.