"Within the first 30 minutes you’re confronted with more Hollywood actors then you can shake an A list stick at"
The film opens with shots of the hustle and bustle surrounding New York City on the morning of New Years Eve. The voice over gives us a nice, uplifting speech about (you’ve guessed it) the new year, with something thrown in about hope for the upcoming 12 months ahead. And as I sat there, I just hoped that the next 120 minutes were enjoyable.
Unfortunately, the hope was unfounded. I mean it wasn’t totally un-enjoyable, but then I did have three glasses of champagne inside me.
Within the first 30 minutes you’re confronted with more Hollywood actors then you can shake an A list stick at. And there were definitely more than one or two faces that surprised me (well not surprised me like “wow didn’t realize they were in this film” because obviously I’d seen the cast list, more like “oh wow, can’t believe they’re doing this film.” A subtle difference but an important one).
It’s a two hour feature on the lives of several New York couples and singles, intertwining on New Year’s Eve. Directed by Garry Marshall (Valentine’s Day) with a stellar ensemble cast, it’s a typical Rom-Com. Celebrating love, hope, forgiveness, second chances and fresh starts. This movie does exactly what it says on the tin.
Star wise, this film has something for everyone. Like Glee? Then Lea Michele’s in it for you. Like aging rock stars? Then feast your eyes on Bon Jovi. Like hot, young Hollywood hunks? Then Zac Efron’s in it for you. (And even better if you like said hunks a bit more naughty, Ashton Kutcher’s appearance is for you). Sex and the City Fans will enjoy Sarah Jessica Parker and there’s even Hollywood royalty in the shape of Robert De Niro and a nearly unrecognizable Michelle Pfeiffer. You get the picture.
But the spectacular cast isn’t enough to save the film. It was cliché, cheesy and at times cringey. When I say this film has the cheese factor, I don’t just mean a slice of cheddar. No, I’m talking about the whole cheese aisle in your local supermarket.
But, and I’m throwing it a bone now, seeing as it is a holiday film it can very nearly get away with it. Despite the fact that it really does push the boundaries of cringe it’s not un-watchable. It’s sugary sweet in places, but there are some laughs. By the time the titles are rolling you’ve been treated to a heart warming message, and of course a happy ending. If nothing else, you'll want to make 2012 a great year, and I guess that was the whole point of the film.
If you liked Valentines Day, you’ll like this. If you didn’t you won’t. It’s easy viewing, requiring absolutely no brain power. And that’s not meant as an insult. It is what it is; a happy, festive holiday film. A chick flick that reminds you that New Year’s Eve can be special and not just the most over priced, anti climatic night of the calendar year.
If you or a friend is with Orange, then go see this on Orange Wednesday. It’s worth half the price of a normal cinema ticket. Definitely no more though. Happy New Year!