Hungry for love and acceptance, young Zelma feels incomplete. Hounded by three singing Mythology Sirens, she sets out on a 23-year quest for perfect love and lasting marriage. She’s unaware, however, that her own Biology is a powerful force to be reckoned with.
Whenever I review films from a festival, I usually just go ahead and watch whatever movie looks the most appealing to me. Perhaps I’ll recognize some of the talent behind the project, and that will be my deciding factor. Earlier today, I saw the title for this movie called My Love Affair With Marriage, which was also animated.
This immediately grabbed my attention, so I knew I wanted to watch it, which is exactly what I did. But, I did not expect to be watching one of the best movies of the year. Signe Baumane‘s film is absolutely brimming with life, wonder, exploration, grief, trauma, longing, love, and so much more to the point where you could easily argue that this is the most expressive film in years.
This film essentially chronicles the life of a woman named Zelma, whose life we quite literally watch play out before our very eyes. The film starts off with her as a youngster, and ends with her as an adult. Along the way, we get to witness all of her emotions, her most important moments in life, her loves, grief, and everything in between.
Even though Zelma is an animated character, never once did that fact cross my mind. I felt as though Zelma were a real person whose life was so interesting and detailed that it seemed as if I knew her personally by the time the end credits rolled. When the screen cuts to black and the credits appear, I’d be surprised if you had dry eyes.
Baumane’s direction here is absolutely sublime. A lot of this movie actually reminded me of Wes Anderson‘s style, in particular, the work he did on Fantastic Mr. Fox, which is one of my favorite animated films of all time. Everything about My Love Affair With Marriage has that classic Anderson style to it, while also feeling very much like its own thing.
I don’t even know where to begin when it comes to talking about the staggeringly beautiful animation style on display here. This is without a doubt the best looking animated feature since 2018’s Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse. Every single frame in this film is so beautiful and intriguing that you could hang them all on your wall. Each frame tells its own unique story which is so rare to find, especially nowadays.
All of the voice acting is terrific as well, namely from Dagmara Dominczyk, who voices the lead character of Zelma. She has the perfect voice to embody this character and all of her feelings.
She’s very emotive and expressive and it’s nearly impossible not to get sucked into the words she says.
My Love Affair With Marriage is an incredibly detailed animated feature chronicling the life of one young woman, and it also just so happens to be one of the best films of the year.
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