"Hope Springs": What critics are saying

Kay Soames (Meryl Streep)and Arnold Soames (Tommy Lee Jones) in Columbia Pictures' "Hope Springs." Columbia Pictures/Barry Wetcher

Kay Soames (Meryl Streep)and Arnold Soames (Tommy Lee Jones) in Columbia Pictures' "Hope Springs."
Columbia Pictures/Barry Wetcher

(CBS News) "Hope Springs," the romantic comedy starring Meryl Streep and Tommy Lee Jones, hits theaters today and is already getting praise from critics.

Pictures: Meryl Streep
Pictures: Tommy Lee Jones

In the film, Streep and Jones play married  couple Kay and Arnold, who after years of marriage find  there are  no more sparks in their relationship. When Kay hears of a renowned couple's specialist (Steve Carrell), she persuades her husband to join her to see the specialist in the small town of Great Hope Springs.

Both Streep and Jones have received praise for their work, and the film has received a 79 percent review on aggregator site Rotten Tomatoes.

Here's what some of the critics had to say:

Ann Hornaday of the Washington Post: " 'Hope Springs' is an extraordinary film precisely because it's so ordinary. Any married couple that has crossed the 20- or even 10-year mark will understand the torpor that has set in to Kay and Arnold's relationship, or the heartbreaking lack of contact that is covered up by daily rituals and roundabout avoidances. But rather than couch that pain in the usual plot devices or jokey bravado, Taylor looks at it squarely, with a minimum of fuss."

Joe Morgenstern of the Wall Street Journal: "A surprise that sneaks up and moves you, "Hope Springs" has the courage of its awkwardness, and this is said admiringly in the spirit of the film, which is irony-free and unfashionably earnest. "

Peter Travers of Rolling Stone: "What could have been strained farce or, worse, geezer porn, morphs instead into a film of hilarious and heartfelt pleasures."

Andrew O'Hehir of Salon: " 'Hope Springs' is an oddly ambitious blend of bland humor and startling insight into the realities of married life. It's something like Ingmar Bergman's "Scenes From a Marriage," as translated into the universe of the Lifetime Network."

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