In our Good Grief review, we talk about how Dan Levy’s film dives deep into the complications of friendship, grief and love!
Good Grief review: Being a huge Schitt’s Creek fan myself, the first word that comes to my mind when I hear Dan Levy is humor and delight. Through the six seasons of the show, he addressed so many issues in a lighthearted and amusing way. With his directorial debut Good Grief, Dan Levy manages to surprise you with a completely new side of him. Turns out he can show sadness and grief just as heartwarmingly as he does with humor. The film revolves around dealing with loss but also having to deal with various other emotions that come along with it.
Good Grief starts with a christmas party at Marc (Dan Levy) and Oliver’s (Luke Evans) gorgeous house that’s straight out of any rom-com. They look so in love and happy with each other. And they also have a melodious sing along with their family and friends. It felt like they were the perfect couple who were living the dream life. But the night ends with Oliver’s death after a car accident and now Marc is left to live a life without the center of his universe. He has his best friends and support system, Thomas (Himesh Patel) and Sophie (Ruth Negga) who balance the dynamics of the group. Thomas is the sensitive, sweet one who’ll tell a few white lies so his friends feel better, he worries about them when they’re late. And Ruth is sassy, borderline narcissistic, an absolute mess and will bluntly spill facts the way they are.
The movie beautifully portrays grief and all its layers because there were several scenes throughout the film where I could feel what Marc was feeling. For instance - the way Marc wakes up the day of Oliver’s funeral. You can see the heaviness in his eyes and chest. Then there’s the scene with his accountant where he tells her about how our brain is trained to love someone and when that person dies, our brain literally cannot accept it because loving them and having them around is all it's ever known. As the film progresses, Marc uncovers secrets about his late husband that were heartbreaking, and felt like a stab in the back.
That’s when the trio takes a trip to Paris, where their friendship and inner feelings are tested. It’s an authentic portrayal of how we feel shameful if we feel anything other than grief for the one who has passed. Marc was sad about his husband dying but he was also angry at the mess he had left and the secret double life he was living. But he was mindful of the fact that he was choosing the anger over grief in order to lessen the pain.
There’s also a whole take on relationships. Ruth has commitment issues, whereas Thomas’ scene where he says he is never ‘the one’ for anybody breaks your heart. I love that they showed Marc not losing hope and not giving up his search for another companion. You can miss and grieve someone while also moving on and finding new love. It’s okay to not be this ideal person that everyone expects you to be.
The title and end credits of the film are all in sober colors like gray, dark green, maroon, reflecting from the start till the end that it's a film about grief. Same goes for Marc’s clothes; from the time he loses his husband, he mostly wears subtle colors like white, black or beige. I love when little nuances like this add to the storytelling and speak beyond the characters.
With Good Grief, Dan Levy gives anyone who's ever had to deal with the loss of a loved one, a big warm hug. His versatility and his talent for writing stories that are free flowing and wholesome will always be something that he will be known for!
Good Grief is now streaming on Netflix!
For more binge-centric content and reviews, follow us on @socialketchupbinge.