For struggling actor Mark (Mark Webber), raising his 2-year old son Isaac (played by Weber’s real-life son Isaac Love) is no easy picnic. Since the death of Mark’s wife, the two are forced to manage by themselves and adjust to one another. In this intimate and authentic portrayal of a young father transitioning into parenthood, The End of Love successfully captures the connection between father and son.

Influenced by his separation from his son’s mother and his passion to make another film, the story behind The End of Love came one night while Weber was playing with his son. It suddenly dawned on Webber to use his experience, build around it and live in that character for the duration of the shoot.

Set against the backdrop of Los Angeles, the film follows Mark and Isaac through ordinary yet almost magical moments that are the essence of childhood and demonstrate the difficulties of being a single parent. When a beautiful single mother, Lydia (Shannyn Sossamon), suddenly comes into the picture, there is a sense of renewal in Mark and Isaac’s life that fills both of their voids. However, it quickly becomes apparent that Mark’s aching heart leads him to get carried away.

As the film slowly moves, the story deviates: Mark decides to attend a gathering of some of Hollywood’s hot young actors, including Michael Cera, Aubrey Plaza, Michael Angarano and many others, who play themselves as well. During a night of heavy drinking, old acquaintances and illegal gun activity, Mark hits rock bottom and is finally forced to accept his responsibilities as a father.

Trying to stay true to capturing real-life moments as they happen, The End of Love is experimental; it simply uses single takes, and it seems as if it were shot almost entirely on a handheld camera to represent Mark’s sense of being.    

Overall, The End of Love is a sweet and honest portrait of growing up. We must grow up for ourselves and also for those who depend on us.

Grade: B

The End of Love releases in L.A. area theaters on March 1.