Movie Mom

Movie Mom

Interview with Ira Sachs of “Married Life”

posted by Nell Minow

Ira Sachs is the writer/director of “Married Life,” a story set in 1949 about a married man (Chris Cooper) who falls in love with a young widow (Rachel McAdams). He believes that it would be kinder to kill his wife (Patricia Clarkson) than to leave her. Pierce Brosnan plays his best friend, who finds himself learning secrets from all three of the other characters.

This is your first film set in another time. What does that bring to the story?


Every time you make a fim you create a world. You make decisons about sets and costumes and you create a universe connected to reality but not reality itself. The year 1949 was a choice that we made and we were authentic to that choice. But as William Faulkner said, “The past isn’t dead; it isn’t even past.” Our parents, our grandparents, are like ourselves; they were full-bloofed full-bodied people who had sex and fights and relationships and and were not different from us. So even though it is set in another time, it is about us.

Elements of this film are very stylized and yet it straddles more than one genre.

Suspense films are often based on communication problems, and that affects all of the plot points. It almost gives it kind of a fable feeling. The animated title sequence gives the audience the understanding that they should not take what follows too literally. It is an entertainment that speaks about things that are very true. Mildred Pierce is not the [documentarian] Maysles brothers [of Grey Gardens]. Movies are romantic fantasies. As i’ve gotten less righteous, less pedagogic, I have become more loving of the artificiality, the art form, the imitation of life in film. That is the way I hope people approach this film, directly. Enjoy its roller coaster ride of twists and turns, not to have to think about it while you watch but it will give you food for thought. I am trying to take advantage of entertainment as not being a negative word. One of the things that is different is that it does not stick to any one genre, like a good cocktail, a mix. It is something original, something new. It uses all those genres beause they are all part of our collective understanding of how to tell a story.

There was a feeling on the set that we all had a chance to do something adventurous emotionally, a genre film on some levels, but with something bubbling up underneath.

Previous Posts

Trailer: "Hail, Caesar!" from the Coen Brothers
[youtube][/youtube] I don't just want to see this movie. I want to see all the movies that they are making in it. With Channing Tatum as a Gene Kelly-style dancer in a sailor's uniform, George ...

posted 8:00:59am Oct. 13, 2015 | read full post »

A Look at Remakes (And Not All of Them Are Terrible)
The blogger behind Phyllis Loves Classic Movies held an invitational blogathon on a subject many people have strong feelings about: remakes. Phyllis herself took on one, or I should say, two of my favorites: "My Favorite Wife" with Irene Dunne ...

posted 2:19:00pm Oct. 12, 2015 | read full post »

Celebrate Columbus Day!
Christopher Columbus has not yet had the movie he deserves, but I prefer the Fredric March version to the later movies.  And I recommend a brilliant and completely engrossing biography from biographer Laurence Bergreen called Columbus: The Four ...

posted 8:00:30am Oct. 12, 2015 | read full post »

Interview: Writer-Director John Swetnam of the Dance film "Breaking Through"
John Swetnam is the director of "Breaking Through," the story of a young dancer who achieves viral fame and then sees it strain her relationships with her friends. I talked to him about the best way to film dancers "There was a Fred Astaire ...

posted 3:49:09pm Oct. 11, 2015 | read full post »

The Art of More -- Coming to Crackle November 19, 2015
[iframe width="560" height="315" src="" frameborder="0"] An intense, one-hour drama set in the high-stakes world of New York auction houses, “The Art of More” ...

posted 8:00:00am Oct. 10, 2015 | read full post »


Report as Inappropriate

You are reporting this content because it violates the Terms of Service.

All reported content is logged for investigation.