The 400-Word Review: Love. Wedding. Repeat.
By Sean Collier
April 10, 2020
I’m pretty sure I liked “Love. Wedding. Repeat” specifically because it’s a damn mess.
It’s a movie at least partially about chaos. “Love. Wedding. Repeat,” which has truly dreadful punctuation skills, is a romcom that seeks to explore the randomness inherent in successful and unsuccessful human interaction. It only barely remains focused on that goal, spending long stretches as a nihilistic cringe comedy. I’m not sure it’s conclusions were justified; I’m not even convinced its characters were likable.
I know that doesn’t exactly sell it — but in a movie that is supposed to be about how unpredictable things are, I sort of enjoy that the film itself is careening wildly down the track. Also, there are lots of good-looking people falling in love. Sometimes (now, for instance) it’s just nice to stare at attractive folks who like one another.
Jack (Sam Claflin) and Dina (Olivia Munn) nearly forged a love connection three years ago, but a particularly ill-timed run-in — combined with Jack’s Hugh Grant-esque British bumbling — spoiled their chance. Now, his beloved sister, Hayley (Eleanor Tomlinson), is getting married; Dina will be in attendance, and Jack is hoping for a reunion. Meanwhile, there’s trouble with the exes: Jack’s former girlfriend Amanda (Freida Pinto) is attending with her jealous new beau (Allan Mustafa), while Hayley’s desperate ex (Jack Farthing) is determined to object to the union.
As a narrator who may or may not be Dame Judi Dench (the credits say no, but they got the world’s best Judi Dench impersonator if that’s true) eventually reveals, we’re going to see this tale twice. Before the reception, a bunch of rambunctious children shuffled all the nametags at the dinner table hosting our principles. (Reminder: Children don’t like weddings anyway, so just don’t invite them.) For half an hour, we see the results from a particularly disadvantageous shuffling of the seating arrangements; maybe-Dench then hits rewind, and we see the combination that would have set things right.
I think a stronger movie could’ve been made by shuffling that deck more than twice, giving the script time for some truly absurd outcomes. I like the ending we get, however — especially since the road in the second round is as bumpy as that in the first. It’s a bold and unusual romcom that remembers that suffering must always precede a happy ending.
Even if it is an absolute mess.
My Rating: 6/10
“Love. Wedding. Repeat” is streaming now on Netflix.