From the outset it’s difficult to engage with a film that so deliberately plonks itself firmly in the middle of the road. Trying to please everyone may benefit the box office take but rarely delivers a good film.
The story is generic stuff but does its part and nips a long at a fairly decent pace; a couple get married and then struggle to get to through the first year. Throw some old flames and a handsome American into the mix and it’s all fairly generic but effective enough for this kind of comedy. There is a couple of half decent set pieces but nothing new on offer and certainly nothing that stops this film being almost offensively average.
Whilst there is undoubtedly a talented cast here (including Olivia Colman), every single person here has been a lot better elsewhere. Rafe Spall is the biggest disappointment, delivering a watered down version of his titular Pete character (from the underrated sitcom Pete Vs. Life). On the basis of this performance one can only assume he is being positioned as the next Hugh Grant. If that sounds like a good thing to you then you will probably take something positive away from this film. Rose Byrne drifts around the screen having seemingly lost any of the comedic stage presence she showed so much of in Bridesmaids. If anyone stands out it’s Anna Farris, she brings charm to the role of kooky aid worker and is the only likeable character of the bunch.
Comedy is above all things hugely personal and subjective, if Run Fatboy Run or Love Actually are your kind of thing then you can probably add a star to this review. For those who like their comedy with a bit more of an edge, steer well clear – you will struggle to raise even a smile for the majority of this lacklustre effort.