‘Marry Me’ rom-com fails in every category

     1 out of 5 stars

     The newest film to hit the box office this past weekend, “Marry Me,” stars Jennifer Lopez as famous singer Kat Valdez and Owen Wilson as middle school math teacher Charlie Gilbert in a romantic comedy that fails to be romantic or comedic in anyway.  

     While it is somewhat reminiscent of the early 2000s rom-coms that J-Lo used to star in, the movie lacks heart. This is likely due to the fact that the writers and actors can’t quite convince their audience to root for a couple with absolutely no chemistry.  

     The Rotten Tomatoes synopsis makes the  storyline seem fun and quirky. “Pop superstar Kat Valdez is about to get married before an audience of her loyal fans. However, seconds before the ceremony, she learns about her fiancé’s cheating ways and has a meltdown on stage. In a moment of inspired insanity, Kat locks eyes with a total stranger in the crowd and marries him on the spot. As forces conspire to separate the unlikely newlyweds, they must soon decide if two people from such different worlds can find true love together.” 

     It seems apparent that Lopez and Wilson are not truly into one another, which made sense at the beginning of the film as the two are thrust into the wacky situation of trying to get to know one another romantically despite being complete strangers. However, as the film drags its feet through its 112 minute run-time (and believe me, you feel each minute) the two never actually get past that initial awkwardness. I’d sooner believe that J-Lo was into a sack of potatoes than the wrinkled 53 year old that is Owen Wilson. 

     The best parts of the film come from the first fifteen minutes, most of which is shown in the trailer anyway. If you watch the trailer online, that’ll be enough. Some scenes in particular, later in the film, had me laughing but not because it was meant to be funny. I was just uncomfortable at how cringy the scenes were playing out and how seriously the movie took itself in all the wrong sections. 

“Mary Me” premiered in theaters on Feb. 11, 2022. Photo from flickeringmyth.com.

     As for the acting, none of the cast do anything that seems unexpected from this type of movie. Kat’s manager, Collin Calloway (John Bradley), is the only character worth liking due to his British charm and unwavering support of the popstar in light of her cheating ex-fiancé. His scenes are few and far between however, which might have been a good thing as the film never got the chance to ruin his character. 

     Sarah Silverman as guidance counselor Parker Debbie played a similar supportive role for Owen’s character, though her performance was about as “Sarah Silverman” as it gets. That is the best thing I can write about her aggravating persona.  

     Alternatively, Charlie Gilbert’s daughter, Lou (Chloe Coleman), is your stereotypical pre-teen embarrassed to be around her nerdy father but ultimately realizes that he’s secretly incredible. Her acting isn’t atrocious but it’s hard to believe Owen Wilson is meant to be her dad when he’s so much older and looks absolutely nothing like her.  

     J-Lo as Kat is pretty much Lopez just playing herself which is fine. The film is obviously just a marketing campaign for her new songs and somehow also a just under two hour commercial for the blender company Vitamix. My guess is it will only pull in audiences during Valentine’s week and then become a forgettable blip in history in a matter of days. 

     As for the songs. Unfortunately, “On My Way” is the only one worth listening to and it’s only played once during the movie while “Marry Me” is played repetitively and doesn’t appear to have taken longer than five minutes to write. Rhyming the word ‘ring’ with ‘ring’ again just seems so lazy and demeaning for both the singer and the listeners. 

     My overall consensus? This film was made past A-list actors trying to revive their dying careers. Many of the people next to me in the theater clearly thought the same thing as people rushed from their seats to leave. I heard one person say “that sure was an experience” whilst I profusely apologized to my friend that I wouldn’t be able to give him these two hours of his life back.  

     If you want to watch “Marry Me” for the trainwreck, I would advise just waiting until it’s made free on Peacock in a couple years. It’s certainly nothing worth committing or saying “I do” to.