Spoiler Alert: Isn’t It Romantic Review

“Isn’t It Romantic” starring Rebel Wilson. Photo courtesy of Amazon.com

“Isn’t It Romantic” is a fun and upbeat movie that provides a slightly better update to the typical romantic comedy. The movie is light but the message is strong: self-love is true love. This movie holds a 68 percent on Rotten Tomatoes – which I would agree with.  While the actors played their roles spot on, the movie lacked that wow factor every classic romantic comedy should possess.

The movie is full of well known actors. “Pitch Perfect” stars Rebel Wilson and Adam Devine play workplace friends turned love interests, and actor Liam Hemsworth takes a supporting role playing a pretty boy with almost no substance.

The casting was done significantly well for the movie and all actors play their characters pretty well. Wilson plays Natalie, a quirky and timid up-and-coming architect struggling in the workplace. She starts off the movie as having a drab life that soon turns to fab after she essentially gets trapped in a dream-like sequence of a romantic comedy. Natalie then points out all the flaws that a romantic comedy has – that romcoms always pin the two main girl characters against each other, they always have a fight scene followed up by the big breakup and make up scene, there’s always a random cheesy musical number and the setting always looks ten times nicer than the actual location – all while simultaneously living in the romantic comedy she dreads.

The movie is set in New York City – specifically the run down parts. Natalie lives in a dusty neighborhood in an apartment above a run-down shop –  once she enters into her romantic comedy her apartment looks like its lit by millions of skylights. The street she lives on is always decorated with fresh flowers and people walking their fluffy dogs, a huge transition from her previous life, but a perfect echo of the false reality romantic comedies enjoy conveying. “Isn’t it Romantic” pokes fun at all these tropes while portraying them spot on in an almost metanarrative way.

While I did enjoy the one-liners Wilson always comes up with for her movies and her character as a whole, I think my favorite part of the movie was the message it sent out. Recently movies have been conveying the message that women can save themselves, and this movie reinforced that idea. Natalie is stuck in a romantic comedy and thinks that she has to get the man to fall in love with her, but then she realizes she must fall in love with herself to get out.

While this plot is sort of basic – critic Christy Lemire even said “You could give the entire elevator pitch in the time it takes to press the button for the floor you want” – I think the message is still something that needs to be strengthened in this culture. There can never be too much preaching about self-love and appreciation, and this movie is just another voice in the crowd.

Where this movie fell flat was the ending. Throughout the whole movie Natalie is working on self-appreciation and confidence and, with that, independence. Yet, at the end of the movie, it ends like every other romantic comedy would. Natalie falls in love with her best friend Josh – isn’t it always the ones you friend zone?

This ending is overused and honestly so tiring. Josh, played by the funny Adam Devine, confesses his love to her and she is completely caught off guard. The two fall in love, and the movie ends.

“Isn’t It Romantic” seems to be poking fun at romantic comedies, while still following the plot of one almost to a tee. There was a lot of potential that this movie didn’t seize, which left me feeling a bit disappointed when leaving the theater. All in all, this movie is a light-hearted easy watch and will probably be on Netflix soon, so it would be good for a nice girls night in.

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