Creative Writing

HE IS LARS: A Film Critique Using Only Variations of the Verb “Is”

[vc_row][vc_column width=”1/1″][vc_column_text]For a class at USC I was given a creative writing assignment to write something using only the verb “to be.” I wrote this film critique of Lars and the Real Girl.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column width=”1/2″][vc_single_image border_color=”black” img_link_target=”_self” style=”vc_box_border” image=”594″ img_size=”full” img_link_large=””][/vc_column][vc_column width=”1/2″][vc_column_text]Lars & the Real Girl

By Danielle Charbonneau

Ryan Gosling is Lars. He is a social recluse. He is uncomfortably awkward. He is shifty and strange. He is cute in a sheepish, boyish way. His mustache is small; his vest is poofy; his existence lonely.

The garage is his home. It’s next door to his brother and sister-in-law. They are playful, pregnant and in-love. They are worried for Lars. Their guilt is nagging.

Lars’ job is in a cubicle. His new co-worker is flirty. Her crush is cute. His response is shy.

Her name is Margot. Her spot on the sideline is clear.

His officemate is quirky. Action figures are common. Porn is regular. An opportunity is presented:

The internet site is foreign. Their specialty is mannequins. The girls are anatomically correct and customizable. Weeks later, a box is in Lars’ garage.

It is not about sex. It is about companionship. It is about the fear of abandonment. Plastic girls are permanent.

Her given name is Bianca. She is fake, yet real to him. His delusion is strong. His delusion is comical. His delusion is necessary: Bianca is practice. Bianca is needed. The delusion is a phase: a vehicle for change. Lars’ need is clear: to learn, then let go.

Margot is still on the sideline.

Lars could be a laughingstock. The town is small. The people are chatty, but their response is compassionate. Their pretending is elaborate. Their pretending is comical. Their pretending is sweet.

This film is about companionship. It is about community. It is about Lars, but is also about a town: their love is transformative; the ice is melted. His choice is life.

The film is not, as it could be, gimmicky. This is probably Gosling: his performance is masterful. His inner-anguish is wrenching. His character is adorable. The transformation, engaging.

The script is original (Nancy Oliver). The metaphors, rich.

Themes are Freudian: Loss is necessary, companionship essential.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row]