They talk it out, make-up (and out), ride bikes, and quickly come to the conclusion that they will raise the child together. Of course, complications ensue. Benjamin’s ex, Terren (Katia Winter), comes into the picture, and his dark side surfaces. While we’re not talking “Patrick Bateman dark,” it is still dark enough for Abigail to question her insta-commitment to this man she barely knows.
10 Things We Should Do Before We Break Up manages to be both unabashedly romantic and unexpectedly poignant. There’s nary a cynical pore to be found, yet the film ultimately seems to argue the inevitability of a break-up for this contemporary coupling. It’s refreshing to see romance looked at in such an authentic, yet still entertaining manner. As such, it brings to mind films by the great Nicole Holofcener.
“…nary a cynical pore to be found, yet the film ultimately seems to argue the inevitability of a break-up…”
The filmmaker’s got a keen visual eye, shooting the movie in an unflashy manner so that certain bits stick out. One shot evokes the lying-on-cracked-ice sequence from Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind. Niederhoffer’s got a good ear for witty dialogue as well. “Some people refer to Florida as ‘God’s waiting room,'” Benjamin says. “Our grandparents live there,” Abigail’s daughter deadpans.
Films like this tend to get the ending all wrong, with couples fleeing into a happily-ever-after sunset. Niederhoffer concludes her movie on a near-perfect note.Save for an unnecessary flashback montage, her film defines the perfect rom-com: somewhat predictable, both heartwarming and poignant, bound to evoke some laughs and tears without pandering to its audience. Forget the title, which brings to mind inferior studio flicks like 10 Things I Hate About Life. A welcome, albeit brief, respite from our tumultuous times, 10 Things We Should Do Before We Break Up provides you with at least 10 reasons to like it.
"…Niederhoffer concludes her film on a near-perfect note..."