Somebody I Used To Know

Real life couple Alison Brie and Dave Franco join forces to bring audiences an unconventional romance in Somebody I Used to Know. Ally, who produces a superficial reality TV show, finds herself at a crossroads when she gets the news that they may not be picked up for another season. On a visit in her hometown, she runs into former flame Sean (Jay Ellis) and the two spend a magical night together reminiscing about their past. As if she wasn’t confused enough, Ally really doesn’t know what to think when she finds out that Sean is actually engaged to Cassidy (Kiersey Clemons).

I don’t know why Brie isn’t in more mainstream movies. Whenever I see her pop up, I am reminded of her charm and charisma and the fact that she can sell any type of role. While I do see why people found Ally to be an unlikable character, I have to take the opposite stance. It’s clear that Ally is going through something life changing – she doesn’t know if the job that she dedicated so much time to is even hers anymore and that prompts her to question everything she ever thought she knew about herself. You can’t blame her for holding on to the one thing that reminds her of who she used to be, even if that person is engaged to be married.

This movie does not end up in the way that you think it will. In fact, the journey to the end destination is actually not as predicable as one may think it is. For starters, I love how we as an audience are introduced to Cassidy and how, just like Ally, we are instantly rooting for her to find happiness. She’s spunky and she knows what she wants. Not to mention the fact that although she sees right through Ally’s ploys, she still gets a kick out of her and the two develop something of a friendship. I also really appreciated how the movie focused a lot on self love; Ally having put her career over Sean back in the day and Cassidy wanting to continue with her band in the present.

With a delightful supporting cast of characters including but not limited to Danny Pudi, Olga Merediz, Haley Joel Osment and Julie Hagerty and set in a beautiful Somebody I Used To Know was absolutely perfect to watch for Valentine’s Day.

Rating: ♥️♥️♥️.5

Shotgun Wedding

Darcy (Jennifer Lopez) and Tom (Josh Duhamel) are all set to get married in a lavish wedding in The Philippines. The walk down the aisle won’t be an easy feat, however, with their ever clashing families and Darcy’s ex Sean (Lenny Kravitz) showing up unexpectedly. As the cold feet start to slowly seep in, the unbelievable happens just hours before they’re set to say I do – the entire wedding party is taken hostage by a group of pirates and it is up to Darcy and Tom to save them before its too late.

I’d been looking forward to checking out Shotgun Wedding. Lopez, hot off her success from last year’s Marry Me is back in another action adventure romantic comedy romp, though I should mention that I preferred the former. Still, this one wasn’t awful. Her chemistry with Duhamel worked surprisingly well (I can’t help but wonder how it would have been seeing Armie Hammer in that role instead) and they certainly got themselves into some crazy predicaments. Just when things would calm down, they would ramp right back up again.

The supporting cast had some standouts too. We had Cheech Marin as Darcy’s dad Robert and D’Arcy Carden as his girlfriend Harriet, both who made for some fun moments. But it was obviously the always charming Jennifer Coolidge who stole every scene she was in. She’s been having such a brilliant year and she one hundred percent deserves it.

With the beautiful and exotic beach location backdrop, Shotgun Wedding was the perfect escapism movie. It wasn’t amazing by any means, but there were some laughs here and there and a couple twists along the way that did actually pack a punch. Easy viewing at its finest.

Rating: ♥️♥️.5

Something From Tiffany’s

Based on the novel of the same name by Melissa Hill, Something From Tiffany’s is a charming new romcom that is perfect for the holiday season. It follows Rachel Meyer (Zoey Deutch), a restauranteur who has been waiting longer than she’d like to admit for her longterm boyfriend Gary (Ray Nicholson) to propose to her. When a crazy mix up happens that lands Gary in hospital and his gift for Rachel is accidentally mistaken for someone else’s, Ethan Greene (Kendrick Sampson) enters the picture. Planning to propose to his own girlfriend Vanessa (Shay Mitchell), he’s stumped when she opens a set of earrings instead of a diamond ring. Can he and his daughter Daisy (Leah Jeffries) fix this in time for Christmas?

The first word that comes to my mind when I think about this movie is cute. Super duper cute. It has all the perfect ingredients for a feel good romantic comedy that is so necessary at this time of the year. With the New York City backdrop, I was sucked in from the get go. It was as if the city served as its own character. Seeing the twinkling lights, beautiful decorations on storefronts and buildings alike and the Christmas trees, I really felt that holiday spirit.

Deutch and Sampson had great chemistry together. As soon as their characters met, I was anxiously awaiting how their journey would carry out. While it took awhile to navigate and figure out, I am glad that they were able to lay some ground work in regards to their relationship. Starting off as friends and realizing over time that they actually had feelings for one another was done well. I also liked the way in which Rachel connected with Daisy over the fact that they both lost their moms at a young age. They developed a lovely friendship themselves and Rachel even taught Daisy how to bake bread!

As soon as I heard about Something From Tiffany’s, my interest was peaked. Especially considering the fact that Reese Witherspoon and Hello Sunshine were producing it. I knew it wasn’t going to rock my world by any means, but I enjoyed it for what it was. It was just what I needed at the time and I look forward to revisiting it in the future.

Rating: ♥♥♥

The People We Hate At The Wedding

When Alice (Kristen Bell) and Paul (Ben Platt) receive invites to their estranged half sister’s (Cynthia Addai-Robinson) wedding in England, they couldn’t be more disappointed. They may have been close when they were kids, but something happened that prompted the three to lead separate lives. Their mother Donna (Allison Janney) hopes this occasion will get them to reconcile.

Sometimes a comedy is just what the doctor ordered and although The People We Hate At The Wedding was pegged as so, the genres did get a little muddled along the way. Mostly over the top and not at all realistic as a result, I couldn’t help but laugh at certain antics our characters found themselves in (the bachelorette party comes to mind). However, as the layers are peeled back and we learn about the events that transpired between the three siblings, the film takes a turn for the dramatic. I’m not sure if the shift in tone actually worked or if it ruined the vibe it otherwise had.

The all star cast of Bell, Platt and Janney is what initially drew me. Bell and Platt, in particular, as a snarky brother sister duo sounded like a dream come true. I only wish I could have been warned as to how unlikable these characters were! At the beginning, the audience feels like they need to root for them and in turn dislike other sister Eloise. However, as the film progresses, we start realizing the opposite. I think this would have been even more impactful had we had more insight to Eloise’s life in London and how she always felt left out.

At least the supporting cast and Eloise are a breath of fresh air. On the plane ride to London, Alice meets Dennis (Dustin Milligan). He’s clearly introduced as a love interest, yet its unfortunate Alice spends most of the time yearning after her married with a baby boss. Then there is Donna’s first husband and Eloise’s father Henrique (Isaach De Bankóle), who’s there to stir up trouble.

Overall, The People We Hate At The Wedding started off strongly and did manage to keep me entertained the whole way through. It’s just a pity that it lost the bite it had from the get go. I understand what they were trying to do, but it wasn’t executed properly.

Rating: ♥♥.5

About Fate

Alexa, play New Year’s Day by Taylor Swift.

I am fully aware that some places haven’t hit fall temperatures, yet here I am watching my first holiday movie of the year.

Starring Emma Roberts and Thomas Mann, About Fate is the story of two people who believe in love, though they have never been lucky in it. Griffin is getting ready to propose to his Instagram influencer girlfriend Clementine (Madelaine Petsch) while Margot is hoping her boyfriend of three months Kip (Lewis Tan) will agree to come to her sister’s (Britt Robertson) wedding. But when none of their wishes come true, fate intervenes and they are thrust together on the last night of the year.

While the storyline may seem predictable and cliche, I honestly didn’t feel that way while I was watching it. There were some obstacles thrown in here and there that threw me off and at times nothing seemed to be going the way it was supposed to. The comedy wasn’t always strong, but the addition of Cheryl Hines as Margot’s mother was a welcome casting choice.

What made this film work so well was the chemistry between Roberts and Mann. The way in which their characters meet at Bennington’s and then are constantly thrown into each other’s path kept me on my toes. They seem to be made for each other with their love for Breakfast at Tiffany’s and the fact that they both live in the same apartment complex, just on opposite ends of the way.

Not a lot of people know about About Fate, but I am hoping to have changed that. It’s a feel good film that will keep you smiling and rooting for the main characters to get everything that their hearts’ desire. Plus, it takes place during one of the most wonderful times of the year, so who would argue with that?

Rating: ♥♥♥

Deep Water

After many delays, the much anticipated erotic thriller starring former couple Ben Affleck and Ana de Armas finally premiered on Hulu this weekend. Vic and Melinda are in a loveless marriage. Staying together to avoid the messiness of divorce, Melinda is allowed to take part in extramarital relationships as long as she comes home at the end of the day. But when her ‘boyfriends’ start turning up dead, their friends start thinking that Vic may be the one to blame.

There are so many things that went wrong with Deep Water. I remember the hype around this movie when it was first announced, but if I’m being honest, I forgot about it along the way? In addition to the delayed releases and the fact that the stars are no longer together, it seemed like it was doomed from the start.

I’m still trying to wrap my head around what it was that I watched. What started off promisingly enough soon plateaued and went nowhere. The plot was messy and never fully formed. It was as if each scene was cut along the way because there was so much missing. I also kept wondering what the point of it all was and why these characters were doing what they were doing.

Ana De Armas broke onto the scene with her role in 2019’s Knives Out. Since then, I have been a massive fan of hers and eagerly anticipate whatever she may be in next. While she was the best part of the movie (regardless of how horrible her character was), not even she was able to save it. I have never liked Ben Affleck. He always comes off so wooden and monotone to me. As a result, I did not buy their chemistry whatsoever.

Neither a thriller, nor erotic, Deep Water was such a disappointment. I kept waiting for the other shoe to drop and instead of getting answers, I was left having wasted almost two hours of my life that I will unfortunately never get back. Don’t waste your time with this one. It isn’t worth it.

Rating: ♥

The Map of Tiny Perfect Things

Time loop stories may no longer be original, but they will always be interesting to me. I heard about The Map of Tiny Perfect Things recently and was instantly intrigued. Each version that I have seen so far of this concept has been different and I was curious to see how it would all unfold this time around. The film was certainly enjoyable though I do think I expected too much from it.

Mark (Kyle Allen) has been stuck living the same day over and over for some time now. It has gotten to the point where he almost doesn’t care what he does with his time because he’s sure that nothing will ever change. But then one day, something does happen that changes everything. Mark meets Margaret (Kathryn Newton). Turns out she is also reliving the same day Mark is. They decide to team up to try and figure out why this has happened to them and how they can break out of it.

What I liked the most about this was that the story picked up in the middle of the time loop and not at the beginning of it. We as the audience knew from the start that Mark had been stuck for quite some time now as he had adopted a similar routine for himself to follow. I think that this had more of an impact and it made me curious to find out why he was in this predicament to begin with. I also liked how Margaret was introduced and that the two of them could sort out their issues together.

While they tried to give depth to the film, I do think that there could have been more. Unlike Palm Springs for example, I don’t think that this version was different than what we have seen before. I did appreciate the fact that the two main characters really tried to focus on the smaller things in life that we otherwise don’t pay attention to, but I was hoping for more at the end of the day.

The Map of Tiny Perfect Things was a cute take on a familiar story. It was entertaining enough for an hour and a half, however I wish it had left more of an impression on me.

Rating: ♥♥♥

One Night in Miami

The hype leading up to One Night in Miami’s release was real. The directorial debut from Regina King was not one to be missed! Knowing that it would be added to my list, I chose to watch it on Inauguration Day. That choice was rather fitting, though I didn’t realize just how much until after it had finished. While the story was foreign to me going in, I did know the names of the four main characters and that was enough to gauge my interest.

On the night of February 25, 1964, four men gathered together in a room at the Hampton House. In this room, minister and activist Malcom X (Kingsley Ben-Adir), professional boxer Muhammad Ali, formerly known as Cassius Clay Jr. (Eli Goree), football player James Brown (Aldis Hodge) and singer songwriter Sam Cooke (Leslie Odom Jr.) discussed various civil rights movements as well as what it is like to be a Black man in America. While the actual conversation these men had is not known, this seemed to be a pretty realistic account of what could have happened.

The movie which was based on the play of the same name written by Kemp Powers in 2013, was interesting to see unfold. While there were some other sets throughout, the room at Hampton House was integral to the story and most of the events took place there. It definitely had the feel of a play and I liked the more intimate feel that it brought. In fact, I think it would be rather interesting to see the play adaption so that I can compare the two.

The casting for One Night in Miami was flawlessly done. Kingsley Ben-Adair, Eli Goree, Aldis Hodge and Leslie Odom Jr. were brilliant as these men who we have all come to know in one way or another. Despite the fictitious depiction of their conversation, I would like to think that there was some truth to these discussions as well as the chemistry that we saw on screen.

Overall, I really appreciated the story and I feel like I learned a lot while watching. I liked hearing each man’s beliefs that they not only shared with one another, but that they wanted to share with the world too. Black Lives Matter is not only something that happened back in the 60s. If the last year taught us anything, it’s that this is still a hot topic that needs to be addressed.

Rating: ♥♥♥.5