Movie Review: Away We Go

A couple in their thirties, Burt (John Krasinski) and Verona (Maya Rudolph) live in a shabby house in the woods, not too far from his parents, when she gets pregnant. They are self-employed. Burt is an insurance broker. Verona is a graphic artist.

“Are we fuck-ups?” Verona asks one night when they sit on their threadbare couch wrapped in an old blanket because it’s freezing and the space heater has just knocked out the electricity. “No, we’re not fuck-ups, why would you say that?” “Because we have a cardboard window.”

They are educated, kind, in love, healthy and it seems they simply haven’t found the time or the reason to rise beyond the orange crates  and bed sheet curtains of college life. But now there is a baby coming. They want to do the right thing for their child. To figure out where they want to live and raise their family, they travel the country, visiting friends and relatives gratefully forgotten. It takes them only hours with each set to realize that there is nothing there for them to learn or even to associate with, and they travel on.

You have to be in the right mood for this movie. You might find nothing in it but a chuckle here and there. Neurotic characters with exaggerated one-dimensional traits make for good drama and laughter, but may not be enough to carry the movie. Not much is going on. A lyrical sound track takes us along, and the scenery tells a story. I found myself homesick for the rocks and saguaros of Arizona. I enjoyed the normalcy and health of Burt and Verona. Seldom do I find characters  in a movie that I’d like to be. They seemed like really good people. I thought I could walk in their shoes for a while.

Rating: **

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