No two relationships are the same in life. Each friendship and romantic tryst is marked by a thousand of details that are wholly unique. In effect, every relationship is its own little world, rich with its own nuances. Such is certainly the case with Florence Ponting (Saoirse Ronan) and Edward Mayhew’s (Bill Howle) marriage in Dominic Cooke’s adaptation of On Chesil Beach. It’s a rewarding singular world lush with vulnerabilities as two individuals in love embark upon adulthood.

It’s 1962 and Florence and Edward are newlyweds on their honeymoon at a scenic seaside hotel in England. Clearly, they haven’t consummated their relationship and the forthcoming experience is loading every word and gesture. Is it anticipation or reluctance? Along the way, viewers are treated to their first meeting, in all its befuddling awkwardness, and their blossoming love story, punctuated with devastating hardship.

Edward is a music lover who often obsesses over rock ‘n’ roll greats while Florence is a gifted violinist who is in total command when leading her quartet. And yet, their love of music rarely bonds them. It’s like two sides of the same coin; alternate passions. However, that doesn’t mean their bond isn’t enthralling and passionate. Cooke manages to depict young love in a fresh, unbridled way that unflinchingly examines the humiliation and joy of sharing everything with someone for the first time.

As always Ronan’s careful portrayal of a woman attempting to find happiness is as delicate as it is hardened by resilience and determination. Likewise, Howle has crafted a performance to be proud of — capturing Edward’s evolving sense of self and those aching moments of realization that mark everyone’s life.

In essence, Florence has a secret. The unspeakable kind, especially considering the era in which they fall in love. Is it bad enough to end their relationship? Just maybe. But the journey to that moment is filled with enough charming cinematic moments to have anyone rooting for this couple to somehow survive together.

Cooke, a TV and theatre director, has a lot to be proud of in his first feature effort. Offering viewers a vision of mid-century England in rich and loving detail. Although this romance will not be for everyone considering how it ends, those who appreciate the ride will be rewarded by the probing of challenging questions that mark every relationship we come across. Every little world.