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Archives for : romcom

Review: “Top Gun: Maverick” & “Fire Island”

This week I review the highly anticipated sequel, “Top Gun: Maverick” and the perfect rom-com to kick-off Pride Month, “Fire Island”.

“Top Gun: Maverick” is currently playing in theaters and “Fire Island” will be available to stream on Hulu June 3, 2022.

Watch the full reviews in the video below!

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Movie Review: “Marry Me” Plays a Great Beat, but Fails to Make a Hit

As a rom-com lover I am so torn on my feelings for Universal Picture’s new film, “Marry Me”. I wanted this movie to give me the same feels that Julia Roberts and Hugh Grant created in “Notting Hill”. Sure, it wasn’t the most realistic plot, but their chemistry sold it. Sadly, the only spark in this film is ignited through the music.

I would like to preface this by saying, I think both Jennifer Lopez and Owen Wilson have done wonderful in other romantic comedies (i.e., “The Wedding Planner” & “Wedding Crashers”). Unfortunately, they just aren’t a great match.

In “Marry Me”, Kat Valdez (Lopez), a pop superstar is set to wed a sexy singer named Bastian (played by Colombian sensation Maluma) live on TV for millions of people to see. Just before the nuptials, news breaks out that her fiancé cheated on her with her assistant. She is shocked, embarrassed, and at a loss. As she stares at her adoring crowd, she spots single dad, Charlie (Wilson), holding a “Marry Me” sign. She brings him on stage for an unexpected exchange of “I do”. What follows is the most cliché rom-com formula. They give the marriage a chance for appearances and fall in love during the process. But of course, their relationship isn’t easy. Kat is more than just a famous singer. She also markets products, and is constantly being filmed for social media. Charlie doesn’t even own a smartphone, and leads a simple life as a math teacher and father.

I don’t mind that the film is predictable. Every rom-com pretty much is, and there’s great comfort in that genre because of it. However, in order to keep these movies fresh, at the very least there needs to be a sliver of a spark between the couple we’re supposed to root for. I honestly would have been fine if Kat just ended up single making hit pop songs. She seemed more passionate about that than her relationship with Charlie. And sadly, the script did not do the cast any favors. There was not enough humor, excitement, or intrigue.

Despite all the negatives I’m saying about the film, there was still some bright spots. The diverse cast at the school gave representation of all kinds of children and teachers. Sarah Silverman playing Charlie’s coworker and friend produced multiple laughs. The music was fantastic! I’ve already ordered my soundtrack (Yes, it’s that catchy). And the brightest light of them all is the charismatic JLo. She may not have sold me on her love for Owen, but she sold me on her love for herself. As a producer on the movie, Lopez also portrays a character much like the real her; divorced three times, a pop sensation, a badass dancer, and her life is constantly on display for the world. You can’t help but admire her ability to poke fun at herself, but also show her strength.

“Marry Me” may not have had me swooning over the “romance”. However, the film made me care more for Jennifer Lopez as an artist and human being. So, not quite the Valentine’s Day movie you’re hoping for, but might satisfy the JLo fans.

Rating: C

“Marry Me” opens in theaters and streams on Peacock February 11, 2022

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Movie Review: “Holidate” is the Holiday Cheer we Need this Year

Netflix has so graciously brought back the romantic comedy genre with a slew of rom-coms to choose from their library. Just in time for the holiday season, they have treated us with another delightful romance with the new film, “Holidate”.

It’s Christmas Day and Sloane (Emma Roberts) is, once again, being hounded by her family to meet someone and settle down before she gets “too old”; and becomes like her aunt Susan (Kristin Chenoweth). Instead of listening to her mom, she is inspired by her aunt’s holidate. Susan brings a different man to each holiday event, allowing her to avoid feeling lonely while having no emotional attachment.

After a horrible Christmas, Sloane runs into, Jackson (Luke Bracey), another lonely single looking to date with out the commitment. They soon pledge to be each others’ platonic plus ones for every holiday in the year ahead. The film is as predictable as it sounds and is self-aware of that, pointing out that in every rom-com the two leads don’t have real obstacles. And in the “Holidate”, it’s pretty clear that there is no real issue besides the default “scared of commitment”.

What “Holidate” does offer is two strong romantic leads with great chemistry and hilarious banter. Emma Roberts shows off her comedic chops and Bracey might actually give Chris Hemsworth a run for his money. We all, at some point in time, have felt lonely during the holidays, and a holidate is a fun concept to see played out. It’s entertaining to see these how these two celebrate each occasion together. Who knew there were so many holidays?!

There are some messages you can take away from the film, like don’t let the of fear of getting hurt stand in the way of a potential love. But, you shouldn’t go into this film expecting anything deep. This is more of a raunchy, well-made Hallmark Christmas special. It’s a lighthearted escape that reminds us of how we use to celebrate the holidays before tragic times.

Rating: 4/5

“Holidate” is available on Netflix October 28, 2020.

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Movie Review: “The Broken Hearts Gallery” Mends Heartbreak with Laughter

If you’re the sentimental type, you probably keep mementos from the past. Things like a concert ticket, old notes, and maybe even a worn out shirt. It’s nice to think back on the good times those items remind you of. But some people may take the collection from their past to a whole new extreme.

In the new romantic comedy, “The Broken Hearts Gallery”, Lucy (Geraldine Viswanathan) keeps a room full of trinkets from past relationships; some of which include toe nail clippings and a ratty old Barbie doll. Her two best girlfriends, Amanda (Molly Gordon) and Nadine (Phillipa Soo), beg her to trash the random belongings, but it’s a lost cause.

Lucy’s most recent addition to the collection is a tie from her now ex-boyfriend, Max (Utkarsh Ambudkar), who dumped her on the same night she gets fired from her gallery assistant job. She later meets Nick (Dacre Montgomery), a handsome, reserved guy who’s trying to open a bar/hotel. As Nick shows off his passion project, the Chloe Hotel, Lucy sees an opportunity and a new home for her memorabilia. Together, the two of them work to open his dream hotel, and give Lucy a location for her Broken Hearts Gallery – a place where people can leave their tokens from past relationships.

Naturally, Nick and Lucy’s relationship grows deeper. The two share long days and get cozy quickly. But both of them have some baggage they need to let go in order to move forward.

We all know by now that I love a good romcom, and this one is a pretty decent one. “The Broken Hearts Gallery” doesn’t reach its full potential given its unique premise. The film only scratches the surface of its characters. There is a point where we discover an even more heartbreaking reason why Lucy keeps so many items from the past. But besides that mention, none of the breakup stories are that compelling. You won’t get the relationship lessons we received from films like “500 Days of Summer” or “He’s Just Not That Into You”. Instead, you’re given a heavy dose of laughter, as it can sometimes be the best medicine to heal heartache.

There is still a valuable lesson about not holding on to the past, but what makes this romantic comedy fresh is the hilarious script and performances. Director/writer Natalie Krinsky serves the right balance of over-the-top humor and heart. The dialogue is delivered at a “Gilmore Girls” pace with Comedy Central language. A lot of the laughs come from the supporting cast, Gordon and Soo do a fantastic job at playing two quirky, odd, support systems for Lucy. However, it’s Viswanathan and Montgomery who light up the screen with their chemistry. Viswanathan glides in this role as she effortlessly plays such an endearing and bubbly lead with ambition. All you have to do is watch the way Montgomery’s character, Nick, looks at her and you’ll be in awe. It’s hard not to smile when these two are on screen together, and I have no doubt we will be seeing much more of these actors.

“The Broken Hearts Gallery” isn’t the most enlightening romantic comedy, but it breaks the mold of the generic formula audiences are so tired of watching. It’s a feel-good, fun comedy that’ll inspire you to dig through your own closet and remove any unnecessary belongings.

Rating: 4/5

“The Broken Hearts Gallery” opens in theaters September 11, 2020.

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Movie Review: “The Kissing Booth 2”

This week I review Netflix’s ne teen, romantic comedy, “The Kissing Booth 2”! In this sequel to the 2018 film, “The Kissing Booth”, high school senior Elle (Joey King) juggles a long distance relationship, college applications, and a new crush.

“The Kissing Booth 2” is currently available on Netflix.

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