In the film, Annette Benning plays a driven doctor who's in a 20 year relationship with Julianne Moore (a qualified architect who doesn't seem to possess the "stick at it" gene). They have had 2 kids (one of each, the girl being the girl from the first series of In Treatment), the sperm coming from Mark Ruffalo('s character, I don't actually think he helped conceive the actors).
Ruffalo's sperm had been used because he'd been looking to pay his way through college, something it turns out he didn't do, becoming a sort of hippy restauranteur instead. When the daughter turns 18, she's allowed to contact her biological father, which she does, allowing Ruffalo into their lives, with some interesting consequences for all of them.
Personally, I don't get why the film's been getting such good reviews. It's about a 20 year marriage where the kids are getting older and something "novel and new" has entered the family dynamic. We've seen this thing a bunch of times before and I don't think it's that stunningly acted (other than Ruffalo, who wins you over despite knowing he's going to be a fly in the ointment).
Part of me wonders if it's been getting such good reviews for its' acting because it's got 2 straight women playing lesbians. Tom Hanks won an Oscar for playing someone who was "special" and part of me wonders if praise for Benning and Moore is coming from that same place. They're both good actors, but would the actors have got the praise if they'd been a "straight couple" who were unable to conceive.
Every time they kissed (and they kissed more than they needed too, as if they wanted to remind us that "yes we're brave actors, look at what we'll do for our craft"), part of me wondered if it was absolutely necessary or whether if was there to demonstrate something else.
It's not a bad film, but it's not as good as everyone's saying.