Starring Rashida Jones, Andy Samberg, Ari Graynor and Chris Messina. Written by Rashida Jones. Directed by Rashida Jones. Produced by David Buelow, Sheri Davani, Kevin Scott Frakes, David Grace, Lee Nelson, Raj Brinder Singh, Noah Stahl, Jennifer Todd and Suanne Todd.
The media's treatment of relationships makes it hard not to wonder if you're the only person left on this planet with an ounce of compassion who still views breaking up as a horrible process – the public is constantly fed news of prominent celebrity couples splitting or being forced to watch characters on television and in movies act casual toward serious relationships. Well, you can rest assured you're not alone after seeing Celeste and Jesse Forever, a clever movie that conjures up, in two miserable hours, all the stress and emptiness of that horrible breakup you'd hoped would never be back to haunt you.
Like every good rom-com, the woman, Celeste (Jones) is very much in love with a man-child, Jesse (Samberg) who'd be perfect if it weren't for his one and only flaw of not being able to grow up. The only catch is that Celeste and Jesse are already smack dab in the middle of a divorce. Being the blazer-wearing career woman that she is, Celeste has grown weary of her fruitless attempts to whip Jesse into shape as a professional artist and contributing partner in their marriage, though she still loves him and they continue to function as a happy couple, which becomes an indicator of her naivety later on. It isn't until Jesse reluctantly forces himself to move on that things are put in perspective for her, but that may not matter after an unexpected twist of events plunges her head first into a difficult but much needed whirlwind of self-realization and personal growth.
An accurate representation of how fragile relationships are and how vital compromise is, Celeste and Jesse Forever is in touch with human emotion, but its heart is in the wrong place with a perplexing and inconsistent theme – the script confuses as we're never quite sure what it is the characters want or need because we don't know enough about their actual relationship together, we just know they share a LOT of inside jokes (talking in weird accents and role playing in public). It's a tedious and dark slice of life that ultimately sends mixed messages. —Rebecca Hillary