"Intended to be Karen Gillan’s vehicle, it is Iain De Caestecker who steals the spotlight"

There are those lightweight and light-hearted films that fit perfectly into that brief spell during the week; spells difficult to forecast but nonetheless come about, like the eventual storm clouds that roll across the sky or the sun that will peak out from behind the clouds. Not Another Happy Ending is one such film, though rather fittingly in talking about the weather, the title of Jane Lockhart’s (Karen Gillan’s) second novel “You’ll Catch Your Cold” is ironically a becoming description for this latest rom-com entry.

Not Another Happy Ending immediately places itself in a quandary. If it delivers the not so happy ending then its title was a spoiler, though of course that is a ludicrously humorous assertion seeing as the rom-com genre is immune to spoilers through the exploitation of a tired and worn formula. If it delivers a happy ending then it will have lacked the courage to dare to be original, instead reverting to the conventional gold pot at the end of the rainbow. But taking the advice of its own struggling publisher Tom Duval (Stanley Weber), Not Another Happy Ending does manage to discover an ending that flows as a natural continuation of its story. Unfortunately it delivers a lighter punch than (500) Days of Summer, a film that dared to be different rather than simply aspiring to be a meditation on the worn formula that is riddled with predictability.

Intended to be Karen Gillan’s vehicle, it is Iain De Caestecker who steals the spotlight, whose Laurel and Hardy routine with Tom is effective, and possesses a comedic chemistry that serves the film well. On his lonesome Weber injects the film with a sense of humour as only an angry French man can, hiding his sensitivity, whilst he readily shirks masculine fisticuffs. Meanwhile Henry Ian Cusick offers a wonderfully humorous turn as Jane’s smug boyfriend, playing the antagonist pitch perfect whilst - if we can use this phrase - the two leads decide if they are soul mates?

De Caestecker steals scenes he has no business stealing. Even as a silent background character he draws your eye to him. He even steals the thunder in one scene from Weber and Cusick, in which he speaks no words but makes one simple yet humorous and perfectly timed gesture. Whilst Not Another Happy Ending could be envisaged as a good omen for De Caestecker, it is a bad omen for Gillan and is telling of her forte. For much of the film Gillan is overshadowed by her supporting cast to include her alter- ego Darsie (Amy Manson), all of who steal the spotlight.

Similar to the Ocean’s Eleven-Julia Roberts syndrome referred to by Jonathan Ross, rarely does one sense what the filmmakers perceived in Gillan to convince them that she was the type of leading lady that could immerse us in the drama. Watching Not Another Happy Ending one senses that her forte is in the supporting role, which would play into her strengths as an actress and give her the freedom to create the kinds of characters whose place are more naturally at home in the supporting cast.

The lack of originality shipwrecks the film, and with twenty minutes left to go resentment begins to simmer as one wishes the minutes were seconds. The film is not without a glimmer of hope within its playful premise of a publisher attempting to drag his writer into misery to help her overcome her writer’s block. In moments it offers a potentially interesting treatise on misery, but the film loses itself and us in the swamp of mediocrity. Plot points such as the daughter-father angle feel lethargic and uninspired.

Not Another Happy Ending is a film that in moments perks up only to immediately begin to wilt. The cast are abandoned by an inconsistent script, and one is left to wonder what Tom would have remarked of Not Another Happy Ending?