Love Wedding Repeat, a Wild Little Romp

Netflix has made good on their apparent mission to bring romantic comedy to people around the world. Love Wedding Repeat is yet another rom-com from the big red streaming giant, and lo and behold, it’s a not-so-catty and actually-quite-enjoyable romp about mostly English, well-to-do singles commiserating and cavorting inside an Italian villa during a highfalutin’ wedding.

Sam Claflin (Hunger Games) and Olivia Munn are Jack and Dina, star-crossed acquaintances with eyes for one another, but fate has not been favorable. They come together for the first time in years for the wedding of Jack’s sister Hayley to an Italian magnate. However, one of Hayley’s exes has blown in on a frenzy of cocaine to crash her party and she won’t have it, even if it means employing a sleeping drug or other strong-arm tactics to get rid of the guy. Naturally, wild hijinks ensue, namely involving multiple couples or would-be couples tripping over each other or their perceived rivals in order to get what they want. It’s all so very charming and frequently hilarious, more than you would expect given the pedigree involved and the inherent fussiness of it all. Sitcom-level misunderstandings and other inconveniences are occasionally annoying as well as typically saved by a game cast. Freida Pinto (Slumdog Millionaire) makes for a believably pent-up child of spoils and hateful vinegar, and Claflin and common scene partner Joel Fry (Yesterday) are wonderful physical performers, particularly in scenes wherein one or the other is under the influence of Nap Right Now, a drug I’m not sure exists but is nevertheless a great arbiter of comedy here.

Love Wedding Repeat squanders its neat little twist to some extent, forgoing complexity for easy-going what-ifs. It’s an intriguing concept that would’ve been better served by a Choose-Your-Own-Ending interactive game a la Bandersnatch. Still, you can’t go wrong with a rom-com that’s actually this amusing. If you’re in the mood for love and hijinks, Netflix’s latest is made to entertain.

Grade: B-

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