WYSIWYG: What you see is what you get. Paul (the always great Mark Ruffalo) is a restaurateur. He names his all natural foods establishment WYSIWYGs to assure his patrons that what they see on their plates is just as it looks, nothing more, nothing less.
This philosophy extends to his character as well. He is very much an out in the open, “here I am, this is me” kind of guy, rough around the edges, ripe smelling. He has no artificial additives or preservatives. This attitude sums up the terrific new movie The Kids Are All Right as well.
It’s the story of a middle-aged lesbian couple and their two teenage children. Nothing is glossed over. We see every wrinkle and every freckle. And the movie is all the more affecting because of this.
Played by Annette Bening (in a role that should win her an Oscar) and the always willing to take a risk Julianne Moore, Nic and Jules make love while watching a “real movie.” Their son, Laser, discovers their “real movie” in a drawer and wonders why they would choose, of all movies, that “real movie.”
This passage, by the way, is frankly funny, and sure to push buttons in the audience. When I purchased my tickets, the ticket girl warned, “I have to tell you. Some people have found the movie very distasteful and have walked out.”
As if in response, my wife just said, “I still think about Paul and Jules, Nic, and their kids. I want to know what they’re doing now.” When you wear characters out of the theater and into the rest of your life like that, the movie is truly something special.
Nic and Jules have lived for many years together in relative comfort, dealing with the stuff that life dishes out day after day, each forgiving the other for her flaws, loving her all the more because of them. But ripples and waves are now appearing – all instigated by their daughter Joni.