- Nate Adams
'Marry Me' review: Say yes to this harmless romantic comedy
Courtesy of Universal
Owen Wilson and Jennifer Lopez starring opposite each other in a romantic comedy/musical? How on earth did that happen? Rest assured, your eyes aren’t deceiving you nor could anyone blame someone for asking a warranted question. They star in the harmless and affectionate romantic comedy “Marry Me” and nothing about this movie, which is built on the world’s hollowest foundation, should work and yet, by some miracle it actually does. Crazier things have happened, but the chemistry between Wilson and Lopez sizzle as the duo slip back into a genre that’s been good to their careers. Both commercially and critically.
Directed by Kat Coiro and, checks notes, based on the graphic novel by Bobby Crosby, “Marry Me” is an endearing charmer about finding love in the most unexpected places. The film centers around global superstar Kat Valdez (Lopez - in a cushy role sculpted around her musical talents) who plans on tying the knot with fellow musical fiancé Bastian (played by Colombian singer Maluma) in front of millions of people across the globe. Right before the big ceremony at Madison Square Garden, where everyone in the city has tried to score a ticket, Kat finds out loverboy hasn’t been faithful and decides at the last possible second to bring up single dad/goofy math teacher Charlie Gilbert (Wilson), who coincidentally is holding up a “Marry Me” sign at the concert (the title of Kat’s and Bastian’s popular single) and the two hastily exchange vows and get hitched.
For Charlie, it was the wrong place at the wrong time (he was invited by his rowdy co-worker played effortlessly by Sarah Silverman) and doesn’t think the engagement goes beyond the viral moment they created, but this is a romantic comedy and you damn well know two people that shouldn’t end up together are going to start feeling each other out. The premise, I’ll admit, might be hard for viewers to get past, though in this universe where love can be serendipitous as it usually is, you can’t hold that against “Marry Me.” Besides, If you’re already watching the movie, chances are the premise isn’t something keeping you awake at night.
What matters is the suave charm and sincerity Wilson encompasses to overcome the movie’s predictable elements. Lopez might be using “Marry Me” as a means for creating music synergy (and to be fair the song “Marry Me” is a freakin’ bop), but her personality is easy to get lost in and Coiro understands both of her star's talents. There have been many odd-couple romances on screen over the last decade and none have raised more eyebrows than the multiple award winning and drop-dead gorgeous Jennifer Lopez getting paired with the guy known for saying “Wow!” Both performers embrace the form and perfect the recipe and despite all the odds stacked against them, “Marry Me” is worth saying yes to.
MARRY ME opens in theaters and streams on Peacock Friday, February 11th.