Paper Heart (2009)

paper heart poster 2009 movie
7.0 Overall Score
Story: 7/10
Acting: 7/10
Visuals: 7/10

Love the interview stuff

Tries a bit too hard for the story aspect

Movie Info

Movie Name:  Paper Heart

Studio:  Overture Films

Genre(s):  Comedy/Romance/Documentary

Release Date(s):  August 7, 2009

MPAA Rating:  PG-13


Michael meets Charlyne

Love is strange and Charlyne Yi has never experienced it.  Now she and filmmaker Nicholas Jasenovec (Jake Johnson) are on a quest to find out what love is to people and they’ll travel the country to hear stories of love.  While Charlyne has cameras following her daily, she finds herself taking up with actor Michael Cera.  Charlyne and Michael are exploring their relationship but it is all on camera.

Directed by Nicholas Jasenovec, Paper Heart is a docu-drama romantic comedy.  The movie blends documentary elements with a fictionalized story.  The movie was met with mixed to positive reviews.


Tell me what you know about love!!!

With movies like Borat blending reality and fiction and documentary comedies like The Office or Best In Show blurring the lines between reality and fiction, Paper Heart is another entry in this style.  Unlike the previous entries, this movie seems to blend real documentary with a fictionalized story…but it doesn’t do a very good job of it.

The story within the documentary is the story of Michael and Charlyne.  It is rather typical emo type love, but it seems really fictionalized.  The “story” revolves around rumors of their relationship (in real life), but it plays with the rumors.  The two make a kind of cute couple, but it seems forced while telling the evolving love story.


Let’s ride, Michael

While I love Michael Cera who has made a career out of goofy and awkward behavior, I do have some issues with Charlyne.  I don’t mind her when she’s doing interviews throughout the movie, but I do get a little irritated by her in other parts of the film.  I don’t find her humor clever or smartly timed like Cera’s humor, but they do make a good team together.  The movie also oddly actor Jake Johnson standing in for director Nicholas Jasenovec in most scenes.

The movie looks pretty good.  I really, really enjoy the investigation into love and the fact that they decided to talk to a wide range of people for these sections.  The people seem to be pretty genuine in their reflection on their past relationships and it is kind of refreshing that the relationships aren’t perfect.  The movie sometimes randomly go into dioramic displays of love, but it isn’t often enough to be a real consistent thread.

Paper Heart has its moments, but it also fails often.  It is a love story trying to appeal to the Millennial crowd but even the jaded Millennials might find it a bit too much.  The movie almost works, but never makes it over the hump to be considered a “good” picture.  I like the concept, but the execution leaves a lot to be desired.

Author: JPRoscoe View all posts by
Follow me on Twitter/Instagram/Letterboxd @JPRoscoe76! Loves all things pop-culture especially if it has a bit of a counter-culture twist. Plays video games (basically from the start when a neighbor brought home an Atari 2600), comic loving (for almost 30 years), and a true critic of movies. Enjoys the art house but also isn't afraid to let in one or two popular movies at the same time.

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