5 TO 7 just prior to its theatrical debut last April (that review is here), I found it a remarkable example of culture-clash love story. Seeing it again this week on DVD -- where it will hit the streets for rental and purchase from IFC Films this coming Tuesday, August 18 -- I am even more impressed. On second viewing it holds up beautifully, delivering its charm, humor, surprise and sadness with a knockout combination of intelligence and grace. As written and directed by Victor Levin, it's an example of the height this genre can achieve, in which both grasp and reach are at one.
Anton Yelchin -- without wasting any time trying to mimic the actual process of writing itself (something movies almost never get right and, in any case, is boring to view). He has given us the thrill and beauty of first love -- first real and important love, that is -- and balanced it quite deftly with life and all its compromises. Most important he's nailed the role of children and how defining they are in the decisions we make.
Frank Langella and Glenn Close as Brian's parents -- and thoughtful, smart ones for actors such as Lambert Wilson and Olivia Thirlby, who play, respectively, the love object's husband and that husband's mistress.
Bérénice Marlohe, below, left, who uses her killer smile and graceful, mature composure to such devastating effect that she'll have you every bit as in thrall as she does our young hero. How the filmmaker employs Arielle's character to bring home his thoughts on compromise and life lessons is quite lovely, leading to a finale that balances poignancy with beauty, sadness and loss with a kind of joyful understanding and acceptance of that compromises we must make. And Levin's final line should resonate like crazy with most writers out there.