Love. Wedding. Repeat
- Emma Simmonds
- 13 April 2020
A game cast assemble for this so-so British rom-com in the Four Weddings mould
'Nothing could spoil this day,' a bride trills fatefully, thus sending us a signal that: Things. Will. Go. Wrong. If you can get past the nonsensical title – seemingly conceived with search engines rather than intelligent adults in mind – you'll find an at-best-passable attempt at a high-concept rom-com. Based on the 2012 French comedy Plan de Table, debut director Dean Craig (the writer of Death at a Funeral) imagines all the ways a wedding could go if just one detail was changed.
Sam Claflin is Jack, the stuttering, emotionally stunted Englishman who falls for enigmatic American Dina, played by Olivia Munn, the friend of his sister Hayley (Eleanor Tomlinson), whose Italian villa-based nuptials act as backdrop to the shenanigans. When Hayley's psychotic ex Marc (Jack Farthing) turns up to disrupt the day, she persuades Jack to drop her powerful sleep medication into Marc's champagne in an attempt to put him out of action, but things go wrong. Events are then replayed with a different guest getting spiked each time.
Love. Wedding. Repeat is slickly assembled in glorious, golden-hued surrounds and, if the characterisations are shoddy, the solid cast get stuck into the chaotic spirit. Comic stalwarts Joel Fry, Tim Key and Aisling Bea appear encouragingly, while Tomlinson puts in a game, sparky performance as a bride grimacing through the madness and Claflin could do this in his sleep (and sometimes has to due to the running gag about sedation), but the charismatic Munn is left to bat her massive eyelashes and simper in a purely reactive role. It's pretty low-brow stuff too – Freida Pinto's cold-fish glamourpuss spends the duration bickering with her beau (People Just Do Nothing's Allan Mustafa), who is dressed like a magician and obsessed with the size of his penis.
Most characters get their turn at love, and heartbreak, as the wheel of chance is spun and re-spun, and a surfeit of humiliations play out. Beyond the French film that inspired it, other influences are screamingly obvious: Four Weddings collides with Sliding Doors in a so-so marriage of fate and farce, that despite the ensemble's efforts is neither funny nor touching enough. Richard Curtis used to make this sort of thing look easy, but a good script is everything. Without one, it all falls embarrassingly flat.
Available to watch now on Netflix.