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Netflix’s Marriage Story is Actually a Pretty Accurate Divorce Story

NEW YORKDec. 11, 2019 /PRNewswire/ — Val Kleyman, Esq., a New York divorce lawyer and principal of The Kleyman Law Firm, commented on the accuracy of Noah Baumbach’s Marriage Story, a recently released film that depicts divorce and divorce lawyers. Laura Dern and Ray Liotta play aggressive, high-powered Hollywood divorce attorneys representing each half of the couple at the movie’s center, and Alan Alda plays a more wholesome divorce lawyer initially retained by the husband.

“Overall, I think this movie did an excellent job showing the struggles that people face during divorce and the downside of acrimonious litigation,” Kleyman said.

According to Kleyman, many couples going through divorce start off with a genuine desire to work out the terms amicably and protect their children as much as possible from the intrusive process of divorce. However, many experience similar struggles as the characters in the movie and do not complete the process cooperatively, ending up in contentious and expensive litigation.

“There is a thin line between uncontested and highly contested divorce and unfortunately that line gets crossed too many times and too quickly. This movie accurately shows that once the line is crossed, most spouses find themselves slinging mud – through their attorneys – in each other’s direction, abandoning who they are and neglecting to consider each other, their children, and marital assets,” Kleyman says.

For Kleyman, the attorney characters in the movie represent three extreme categories of divorce lawyers. Laura Dern’s character is a type of a divorce lawyer who uses a friendly approach and blurs the lines between her job as a lawyer and a personal therapist. Ray Liotta’s character shows an aggressive type fixated on winning and his ego. While Alan Alda plays a divorce lawyer who is honest and soft-spoken yet lacks the chops to stand up and fight.

“The movie does a good job showing three very distinct approaches and types of divorce lawyers that one can encounter. While I certainly recognized many lawyers I personally know in each character, what is not shown in this movie is a hybrid between the three personalities. There are many great divorce lawyers who have solid counseling skills and can lead their clients towards a collaborative divorce while remaining equally able to litigate aggressively if the case calls for war,” said Kleyman. “Personally, I think that lawyers and firms who are able to offer clients all three approaches on an as-needed basis are best prepared for the drama, trials and tribulations of divorce.”

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