The separation of a husband and wife is always a traumatic experience for those involved. When there are actually children involved, that experience becomes exponentially more harrowing and complicated. And sometimes through it all, you just have to make a dad joke. That’s exactly what happens in the new drama “The Killing of Two Lovers.”

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With the film premiering as part of the NEXT section at this year’s Sundance Film Festival, we’re thrilled to offer our readers an exclusive clip at what might be one of the most effective and beautiful dramas to grace the event. As mentioned, “The Killing of Two Lovers” follows the story of a man, David, that is just trying to keep his life together after the separation with his wife, Nikki.

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And in the clip, we see that one of the ways that David copes with the stress, while also trying to keep a solid connection with his children, is with the tried and true method of dad jokes. And in this context, the joke that he tells his children is heartwarming, but also has the tinge of tragedy, as the audience knows the heartache and turmoil that is buried inside.

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The cast includes Clayne Crawford, Sepideh Moafi, and Chris Coy. The drama is written and directed by Robert Machoian. The filmmaker’s previous films include “God Bless the Child” and “When She Runs.”

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“The Killing of Two Lovers” has its premiere at this year’s Sundance Film Festival on Monday. You can watch the exclusive clip below.

Here’s the synopsis:

David is trying to keep it together. He and his wife, Nikki, are going through a time of transition and allowing each other space to figure out what it is they want from life and from their relationship. But there is one major issue: David doesn’t want space. He just wants things to get better, and he plays along with Nikki because he suspects it’s the only thing that may keep them and their four kids together. But he is hotheaded, jealous, and terrified of losing his family—an explosive combination in a claustrophobically small town where private lives seem impossible to preserve.

Follow along for all of our coverage from the 2020 Sundance Film Festival here.