Acrimony

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Acrimony is an excellent movie with Oscar-worthy performances by the cast, leads and otherwise.  I wish I had seen this movie while it was in theaters.  Nevertheless, it is available for rent and purchase.  If you haven’t seen it, give it a look, you will not be disappointed.

Acrimony struck a chord with me as it evolved to display a woman doing everything she could to support her partner before finally being convinced by her sister to file for divorce.  Unlike the typical scenario in which the man leaves the woman that has been “down” for him for another woman when he finally “makes it,” she left him.  He eventually becomes successful and provided her the just due he owes her in financial compensation voluntarily.  You cannot put a price on time, but without question, he did the right thing, and it’s what he did that made the movie better because of it.  The rest concerning the movie’s plot is entertaining, yet believable.  Again, if you haven’t seen it, see it.

I want to share my view of five concepts on display in the movie.

Family influence.  The main female character allowed her sister to convince her to divorce the man she loved through “thick and thin.”  There was plenty of “thin,” but she loved him, supported him, and believed in him for 18 years.  When dealing with family and friends, be sure that you are deciding.  Input is significant, consider advice and counsel, but the final decision must be your own.

Confidence.  The main male character has a dream that takes 19 years to come to fruition.  Throughout the entire 18 years, he is confident he will succeed.  At no point does he fail to believe that his idea is great and provided the resources will be a success.  How does someone tell when the confidence is accurate placed?  That I don’t know.  I believe that answer is only knowable by the individual.  Spectators can evaluate based on the facts, but you and only you will know.  Confidence doesn’t ensure success.  However, lack of confidence will set you back significantly.

Commitment.  The main female and male characters displayed a commitment to each other that was nearly unbreakable.  After the divorce, the male showed his commitment to his former wife by providing her with a fortune.  Commitment is just as, and I assert more important than love in a relationship.  When you select your mate for life, the first thing that you must get right is the selection.  Next is the decision to commit.  When you do, do it for life and do your best to ensure the person you’ve chosen has done the same.  With an exception for extreme circumstances, live with the choice.  The world if full of vibrate, exciting, and attractive people, which means there will always be someone a bit more enticing in the moment, but in general relationships trend in a similar ebb and flow regardless of the partner.

Self-awareness.  The male character is shown to ignore the fact that his wife is working two jobs while he focuses on his idea.  The movie communicates that he obtained an odd job here and there, but nothing sustainable that generates enough income to help with just one bill.  The situation itself depends on what you want out of the relationship.  If the roles were reversed, not many would question why the female lacks employment.  Even though women are in the workforce, it is still acceptable for a male to provide for a female, and almost taboo for a female to provide for a male.  Nevertheless, it happens.  Which brings me back to self-awareness.  Male or female, if your mate is the sole provider your self-awareness about your contribution is important in showing how much you understand and appreciate what they are providing to the relationship.  Simple things like being energy efficient, striving to cut cost, doing chores, cooking, and the like are all ways to show appreciation and contributions to the relationship.

Communication.  Be honest and up front.  At numerous points in the movie instead of discussing her concerns with her husband she just smiles and moves on.  Ultimately, that led to frustration and resentment.  Her assumptions are what allowed her to be swayed to divorce her husband.  He went from a loving husband to a master manipulator in her eyes in part because she failed to speak honestly and confront her husband on topics that she needed clarity.

I watched Acrimony and couldn’t help but imagine myself in the shoes of both characters.  In life, just as in the movie, the characters cannot predict the future.  Had she not divorced him, maybe he doesn’t make it big.  Perhaps he does.  The lesson is choices have consequences, and you must own your decisions because you are the one living with the results.

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