Movie review: Ruby Sparks

Stars: 4/5
Cast: Zoe Kazan, Paul Dano, Annette Bening
Directors: Jonathan Dayton, Valerie Faris
Running time: 104 mins
Rating: M (offensive language, sexual references & drug use)
Verdict: An original, whimsical take on love and relationships.

Actress Zoe Kazan's first screenplay is an intriguing, charming romantic comedy, in which she also stars as title character Ruby Sparks. It's a bold debut, one confidently blurring the line between reality and fiction, delivering a smarter, darker examination of relationships than the average rom-com.

It's also the perfect quirky material for the big-screen return of Little Miss Sunshine directing duo Jonathan Dayton and Valerie Faris.

Kazan's story about neurotic young literary genius Calvin (Dano), who writes into existence his perfect girlfriend, is a little Charlie Kaufman-esque. A small writing project set by his psychiatrist to help cure Calvin's writer's block leads him to create the character Ruby Sparks, inspired by a woman he meets in the park.

Motivated by finding this new character, Calvin's words flow and suddenly it appears there is a chance he'll write a follow-up to his bestselling debut novel, which is regarded a decade later as an American classic. Not long after he creates this fictional figure Calvin finds Ruby (Kazan) cooking in his kitchen. Is he going mad or has he magically transported his written character into real life?
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