Especially as we're watching it from the point of view of the little girl (Onata Aprile) between them. That's often literally true - the camera lives with her about three feet off the ground, and often pretends, as little Maisie does, to be interested in her tea party while the parents have howling battles in another room.
It's an interesting performance by this tiny actress, who tips us that she knows what's going on between her parents, but keeps the reality of it at bay with her child's gift for play, or denial, or some combination of both.
Her emotional survival skills adapt as the couple splits, the father acquires a girlfriend, and the mother strikes back by shanghai-ing the first tall, blond bartender (Alexander Skarsgard) she can find.
It's an appalling race to the behavioral bottom, and often painful to watch. And yet the movie isn't pointlessly excruciating. Moore manages to craft a redemptive moment for her awful character in her final desperate moment on screen.
And if the parents are blind to Maisie's welfare, others are not, and it plays out in a way that gives the movie surprising emotional resonance.