Fans of AMC’s Mad Men who find themselves frustrated by the end of this year’s short penultimate season can at least get a little more of Peggy in the new indie film The One I Love. Elisabeth Moss, who has blown audiences away by portraying Peggy Olson on Mad Men, looks to find her first big success on the silver screen in this Charlie McDowell-directed romantic comedy.
She has successfully starred in a well-received mini-series, Top of the Lake, but after some misses and minor roles in films like On the Road and Darling Companion, she has yet to display the talent Mad Men fans know she has in a feature film.
Joining her in the attempt to successfully cross over from television to film is Mark Duplass, perhaps better known as Pete from FX’s The League. Like Moss, The One I Love is not his first foray into film. He had a small part in the Oscar-winning film Zero Dark Thirty. However, for a romantic comedy like The One I Love, he’s probably going to draw more from his experience in the lighthearted The League than his role in a movie about hunting down Osama Bin Laden.
Interestingly, Ted Danson, himself a former major television star, rounds out the cast as the counselor to the couple of Duplass and Moss. Maybe he had some tips for these younger TV stars about transitioning to the big screen.
So while it’s true that these two television stars are trying to make a transition to the movies in something that is being billed as a romantic comedy, it seems that label isn’t really sufficient to describe what you’re going to get in The One I Love. None of the familiar romantic comedy formula is on display in this trailer, at least. This isn’t a trailer that shows Elisabeth Moss too involved in her prestigious career to find true love, only to encounter Mark Duplass, who just really rubs her the wrong way. They couldn’t possibly end up together, right?
Instead, the trailer actually reveals very little. We know they are a married couple who go on a retreat, but the whole appeal of the trailer seems to center around the fact that we don’t get much more than that. There’s something mysterious about the retreat that isn’t revealed in the trailer and apparently is so integral to the plot that it isn’t revealed in early reviews of the film, either. It seems like a normal place, and they’re often seen in the kitchen with ceramic cookware, but then it starts to get weird. Different dimensions are mentioned at one point, as well as hints of time travel, but whatever it is seems to be more interesting and thought-provoking than frightening.
The mood of the trailer seems to suggest it’s an unnatural mechanism that raises some metaphysical questions in the form of Groundhog Day or Being John Malkovich, more so than houses-with-a-secret-films like The Haunting. If it’s half as interesting as either of those two films, it’ll be worth a watch purely as a thought experiment, though the secretive nature of the trailer almost makes you want to see it just to finally know what it’s all about.
Intrigued by The One I Love? Read Screen Invasion’s spoiler-free review.