The winter holiday season brings the blockbusters that will make lots of money, not to mention at least a few movies that are pretty good. Then comes January. January is the home for movies that were released in limited areas in December for Award purposes, and for movies that the studios do not expect to make much of a name for themselves.
When I saw previews for The Wedding Planner, I was sure that this was going to be another horrible early year movie. There was nothing interesting about the trailer, and it definitely did not look that funny.
But, obviously, I've brought myself to watch this Jennifer Lopez/Matthew McConaughey picture, and I must say I was pleasantly surprised. Sure, it has a pretty clichéd theme, but most romantic comedies can only stray so far from the beaten path. In fact, the fact that Lopez is a wedding planner who falls in love with one of her bride's grooms is actually a pretty good development.
So... The Wedding Planner does not look that much different from a hundred other movies, but it does have certain qualities that make it entertaining to watch, the first being that it is just... entertaining to watch. There is more comedy than I was expecting, both in dialogue and in action. McConaughey is especially good at making people laugh without saying a word.
The acting is decent enough. I have always liked McConaughey, ever since I first saw him in A Time to Kill (at that time analysts were predicting him to be the next big actor... boy, were they wrong). Lopez, on the other hand, is continuing to disappoint me. She is good enough in here to be the main character, but sometimes she is a little too pouty for her role. The Wedding Planner is a good movie but it does mark her decent from a pretty far out there film The Cell to the decrepit Angel Eyes.
I did not like the sort of abrupt introduction to a substory about Lopez' parents, although it does manage to fit itself in with the rest of the movie later on. However, it seems as though this story was brought in for the sake of bringing another emotional level to the film, and it just doesn't do that. An alternative could have been thought of that works a lot better.
All in all, The Wedding Planner was a big surprise. It still has elements that need work, and some cliché moments, but the average person should find this movie pretty entertaining, funny, and maybe a little heartwarming. Of course, I'm a guy, so I wouldn't know about that.
Review by Erik Samdahl unless otherwise indicated.
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