Ruth & Alex
Starring the amazing Morgan Freeman and Diane Keaton, this adorable film tells the story of Ruth and Alex, and their journey to move out of the apartment they have called home for the past 40 years. While still highly active, they are feeling the effects of ageing, and decide it’s time to put their beloved home on the market.
What follows is an undeniably charming nostalgia trip, as they reminisce about their lives together. When Ruth and Alex first moved to Brooklyn, it was the 1970s, and they had the whole world at their feet. He was a budding artist; she was his love and his muse. Despite facing the odd bit of prejudice at being an interracial couple, this is not the main focus in a movie that, on the whole, steers clear of drama in favour of sweetness and light – not surprising from the director that brought us the similarly unassuming and enjoyable Wimbledon (Richard Loncraine).
A series of problematic events later unfold, which perhaps seem at odds with the otherwise gentle and uneventful pace of the movie. A trailer jackknifes on the Williamsburg Bridge and the driver inexplicably flees the scene, putting all of New York on an overblown terrorist alert. The couple’s little dog, Dorothy, becomes ill and the vet bill comes to around $10,000. In addition, an overwhelming sequence of encounters with realtors, agents, and snotty bargain hunters makes their heads spin. All of this is intertwined with a series of flashbacks that tell the story of the couple’s married life. As Ruth and Alex trail through apartments and try to imagine their new life in a new home, they start to question whether it is worth leaving behind so many memories.
Although Ruth & Alex (originally released as 5 Flights Up) is not overly exciting or fast-paced, it truly benefits from the strong performances of its two seasoned actors, who have rarely ever put a foot wrong in their respective careers. Their names on the poster alone bring a certain gravitas to a film that might not otherwise generate quite so much interest. They are very believable as a couple, and portray this loving marriage so comfortably, and with such tenderness, that it is hard not to be affected by this heart-warming tale. Unquestionably, this is a film for all ages that is best watched with a blanket, some ice cream and a loved one.
The editorial unit
Ruth & Alex is released nationwide on 24th July 2015.
Watch the trailer for Ruth & Alex here: