Lars and the Real Girl is one of those quirky movies a person either loves or hates. I loved it; one of my critique partners loathed it and found it disturbing. But we frequently disagree on movies.
Ryan Gosling stars as a young man in a northern Minnesota town who is searching for true love. He’s also battling his way out of depression. He orders a blow-up sex doll on line and introduces her around town as his girlfriend, Bianca, a wheelchair-bound missionary.
As I said: quirky.
But not kinky. There’s no sex involved. Lars is deeply religious and Bianca is a missionary. Lars’s depression isolates him from human interaction. Once his brother and sister-in-law get on board with treating Bianca as “real”, the rest of the town follows suit . How the townspeople react to and accept Bianca helps Lars connect to others and heal.
I found it very sweet.
Perhaps I liked the story because the town in which I grew up looked after a family of intellectually disabled people. Maybe outsiders didn’t understand why Henry/Hank (depending on which side of town you lived) was allowed to wear out the grass under the big tree on the corner outside the Presbyterian church, but he sat there for years, being social. Some folks called him the mayor. And Eddie was a particular favorite of the children who visited his grandfather’s front porch to purchase penny candy.
If you like offbeat and sweet, try Lars & the Real Girl.