By Margaret Curtis, PhD
Divorce emerges as the great theme of Fall 2012. Can Meryl Streep finally divorce the charming Alec Baldwin in It's Complicated? Can the American public divorce itself from infatuation, too? Charmers convince you they’re in love with you. Examination of their campaign posters, though, shows the object of their affection—and, Honey, it ain’t YOU!
In this superb comedy, Meryl Streep bedazzles both her bedazzled men, her family and--always!--her audience. Sure, she fell in love with that playboy when she was young and silly. Now, though, her eyes sparkle as she sees through his endless come-ons—and goof-offs. She realizes she will be swinging forever in limbo if she believes his advertising appeal lasts a lifetime.
As her wannabe, maybe, sometimes husband, Alec Baldwin also gives a performance of a lifetime. Could anyone do better as a frustrated politician, who can’t resist romancing every woman he encounters, making them believe that only he possesses the key to their hearts—and, Honey, it ain’t abortion! (9_9) Sexting his own ex-wife proves his downfall. Better cover up that belly, Ally! (9_9)
As her new partner, Steve Martin also proves the perfect choice in It’s Complicated. Who better understands comedy than this veteran of Saturday Night Live, the Straight Man of the Year? He can’t stand less than honest commitment. He wins her, loses her, and wins her again in good cinematic fashion. This plot-line mirrors political polls, showing the Good Guy can still win women voters!
Seriously, folks, as that consummate comedian Johnny Carson would say, can voters pretend their hearts were not broken when they voted for the history books, instead of on the issues? If you remain a big fan of unemployment, marriage to infatuation remains a possibility. But, Honey, once you get youthful indiscretion out of your system, (9_9) your choice is not really complicated anymore.
*Readers of this column will recognize the emoticon for Rolling Eyes.