Friday, March 18, 2011

"Ambivalence is a disease, an actual mental illness"

"The Romantics" (2010)
Movie Reviews By Susan Granger 

On one raucous night before an ill-fated WASP-y seaside wedding on posh Long Island, an eclectic group of close friends, members of an exclusive Ivy League clique, make boozing fools of themselves, beginning with "This occasion calls for a drink."


That's because everyone is acutely aware that the stoic maid-of-honor, Laura (Katie Holmes), an ambitious writer, is caught in an miserable predicament: she's had a passionate affair with the groom, Tom (Josh Duhamel), a former lifeguard/swimming champion who's en route to earning his Ph.D. Seemingly, their lengthy liaison ended abruptly, just before he proposed to her prim, wealthy, hyper-competitive ex-best-friend/roommate, Lila (miscast Anna Paquin of TV's "True Blood").

"Ambivalence is a disease, an actual mental illness,"
Laura warns Tom.

They're not the only ones who are approaching the awkward nuptials with determined trepidation. "He has to love you more than you love him," cautions Augusta (Candice Bergen), the ever-practical mother-of-the-bride. "That's the only way marriage works."

Also on the prowl at the snobbish, genteel Yacht Club during the jovial wedding rehearsal party are the three groomsmen (Elijah Wood, Adam Brody, Jeremy Strong) and two bridesmaids: preppie Weesie (Rebecca Lawrence) and rebellious Tripler (Malin Akerman). Despite their cutesy names, their sketchy, one-dimensional characters are barely delineated as the hackneyed, superficial betrayals of the revelry unfold.

As producer, screenwriter and director, novelist Galt Niederhoffer's inexperience is awkwardly evident from the getgo, explaining the contrived title as referring to the incestuous dating history of the pampered, privileged participants and partnering with clothier J. Crew in the marketing campaign. At times, indeed, the actors' wardrobe seems to upstage the melodrama inherent in their promiscuous affairs. Except for Katie Holmes, whose compelling performance is the only one that's even remotely convincing.

When you consider it in the same reunion genre, like "The Big Chill," "My Best Friend's Wedding," "Margot at the Wedding," "Rachel Getting Married," even "St. Elmo's Fire," on the Granger Movie Gauge of 1 to 10, "The Romantics" is a flimsy 4, filled with clumsy, hand-held camerawork and turgid, pretentious literary prattle, signifying very little.

By Susan Granger © 2010 Review of "The Romantics" (Paramount Pictures)

The Romantics (film)

 From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Directed by Galt Niederhoffer
Written by Galt Niederhoffer
Starring Katie Holmes
Anna Paquin
Josh Duhamel
Dianna Agron
Adam Brody
Malin Åkerman
Elijah Wood
Distributed by Falcon Films
Paramount Famous Productions
Release date(s) January 24, 2010 (Sundance)
September 10, 2010 (United States)
Country United States
Language English
Gross revenue $106,524
The Romantics is a 2010 romantic comedy film based on the novel of the same name by Galt Niederhoffer, who also wrote the screenplay and directed the film.

Contents

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Plot

Seven college friends reunite six years later for the wedding of Lila (Anna Paquin) and Tom (Josh Duhamel). Things go awry when the maid of honor and the bride clash over the groom, with whom the maid of honor was once romantically involved. The story moves slowly trying to explore all the relationships of people in and around the circle of friends. The movie ends with the wedding getting ruined by rain, just before the marriage can be concluded. It is implied that in the end the controlling nature of the bride is too much for the groom and he still loves the bridesmaid.

Cast

Production

Liv Tyler was originally cast as Laura, but was replaced by Katie Holmes, who also serves as the film's executive producer.
Filming took place from November to December 2009 in Southold, New York. The movie premiered at the 2010 Sundance film festival. It had its world premiere during the 2010 Cannes film festival. It was scheduled to appear in selected theaters September 10, 2010. [1]

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