Directed by Jonathan Dayton & Valerie Farris
To many, films that have been labeled as dramatic comedies might sound as a solid oxymoron in the ears. However, when talking about Ruby Sparks, one is indirectly considering a much darker edge to a more comical tone. In fact, this is no comedy at all, but merely a hypothetical sketch of one terrifying thought come to life. It could have been anyone’s idea, really.
The film develops a simple and solid idea. A struggling writer (Paul Dano) finds inspiration and romance by creating a female character called Ruby (Zoe Kazan). Imagine his surprise or his utter madness when he discovers that his fictional character is alive and does anything he asks of her.
Power is desired by many, but it can also create fear since it comes with great responsibility. Ruby Sparks envisioned an interesting plot where fun and clever has been combined with sad and morose scenery. The film manages to capture the fears and joys of having great power in a rather peculiar way.
Although many have mentioned that the film does not explore entirely original topics (drawing parallels to 500 Days of Summer), it stays a compelling picture for anyone who wishes to see an intellectual side to what would appear to be a silly comedy — or would you call it just another indie film?
The film most certainly puts different elements from various genres up for display. I enjoyed the chemistry between the two lead actors, Paul Dano and Zoe Kazan, but what really got me watching this film in the first place was the endearing thought of a fictional character come to life.
The first half of the story keeps up a more comical tone while the ending is a crushing heart break. The heightened drama had me convinced that there would eventually be a moment in the story when things would fall back to their places, but I was wrong. As much as the film tries to be all intellectual and even philosophical, the directors needed to take the risk of continuing with developing the storyline to a darker tone. And hence my dislike for how it all ended. Without revealing too much, the film goes silent on an expected turn of events instead of a truly bittersweet ending that’d fit perfectly with the overall style of the whole.
In conclusion, I wouldn’t do this film any justice if I don’t mention how much I really enjoyed watching it. Even though it had its weaknesses, it was an intriguing hypothetical realisation that you definitely should not miss — especially if you enjoy watching a new twist to Pygmalion’s legendary tale.