The 1989 movie “War of the Roses” is a black comedy. Indeed, this tale of a marriage gone hellishly wrong is so dark that it might be difficult to classify it as a comedy at all. It is, however, in many ways a very accurate mirror that we can hold up to our own lives, for we have all had relationships that were once healthy and happy turn poisonous, seen intimacy that was once used to proffer love and help become a source only of knowledge that can be used against one’s former friend or lover.
The movie tells the story of Oliver and Barbara Rose (played by Michael Douglas and Kathleen Turner) who at the beginning of the movie seem to have it all. And not just in terms of material goods: They have what appears to be a truly loving family, with two children and – of course – a dog and a cat. And a beautiful house. This house, like everything else that they once held in common, that once held them together, becomes a force for division and contention, a weapon that they can use against each other.
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