Friday, 29 June 2012

[Review] The Five Year Engagement

I went into this film with my expectations firmly set on neutral. I wasn't expecting a groundbreaking film, or something that was going to move me to my very core. Of course, a film with Jason Segal that was directed by Nicholas Stoller was never really going to offer those things, and it didn't, but that's what made it enjoyable. It's a film you can sit and watch quite happily to cheer you up for a couple of hours. 

Focused on Tom Solomon (Jason Segal) and Violet Barnes (Emily Blunt), the story follows the joys and stresses of getting engaged, and evidently what comes along with it - Commitment. 

The couple were extremely believable as one, and after watching interviews with the two and seeing how much admiration they had for one another (even to the point of Segal writing the part for Blunt) its proven even more so. The film is filled with co-stars that also work with the plot and theme of the film comfortably, offering alternatives to the central 'perfect' couple, creating the comedy and emphasising the love in the film. 

Its not as out-there as you may want it to be. By no means is this a Judd Apatow type of love story. The morals are extremely traditional for a Hollywood production. It seems to have borrowed minor aspects of the grotesque comedy that plays focus in a lot of romantic-comedies today, but still remains grounded in the fact that this is a love story. You follow them from the early stages of getting engaged, through to the planning, obstacles that come their way and then what happens next (You can find that out yourself). 

I found it interesting that you are offered both the man's point of view and the woman's when it comes to getting engaged. Instead of the man remaining completely passive throughout all the stages of the woman planning her dream wedding, you are offered both their interests and concerns, but in a very real way. The film shows this best in which Violet tries to encourage Tom to talk about his feelings whist he remains cold and states men do not talk about their feelings. You've got both the typical woman and the typical man together in one film, which is what makes it quite a relatable and fun film to watch. 

What also makes it fun is the fact that if you're a Segal fan, you will not be disappointed. He gets a little bit naked, takes part in dressing up in a ridiculous costume and offers punchlines and silly voices that make you want to burst out with a very loud laugh. Along with Blunt who is a complete English rose with an edgy comical twist, this combination makes for a fabulously amusing film. 

As I said, by no means is this one of those films that you'll HAVE to show your kids when their older to teach them about the joys of cinema, but its definitely one to watch on a Saturday evening, and a good one for Stoller to add to his growing 'Director' list. 

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