I know it's hope, but it's just the beginning of another stage. It's like 'ok, we stay together but…'. Relationships and making it work, it's a tough balance - that someone doesn't give up everything. Sadly, often, one person gives up a lot, and - not to be feminist, but it's often the woman.
I felt like that's a big deal in a relationship - how do you keep your dreams, stay yourself, do what you want to do with yourself - all the compromise. How do you accept compromise without hitting 50 and being hateful and resentful?! It's a big deal. A lot of people drop everything, but it's all about finding the right balance.
It's both. It's the ultimate ambiguity of life. You have to be honest with yourself. You have to be like 'well, where am I at?'. The whole movie is a contemplation of that. Jesse and Celine - we find them in what's essentially paradise, with everything they may have wanted nine years ago; they're together, their careers seem ok, but there's still a general disgruntlement about being a human being in the modern world.
That hovers over the whole thing - and how tough it is to negotiate space with someone else. You get older, you settle in and you think - what is the definition of love? There's a complexity there that you can't ever imagine when you're super-young. It's just impossible.
I've been happy with the response - for each person, it's a complete absolute reflection of where you are in your life, and your relationship.
I've met people who felt empowered by it - 'oh that's great, you can work through it, you preserve and your prevail' and I know other people who come out of it thinking 'oh they're doomed, they have to break up'. It's just about where you're at and it can be both. In any relationship, you can think 'this is the end' and you start to visualise yourself in a new situation, but then there's renewal.