Monday 27 February 2017

Mr. Right

The world of romantic comedy is crowded, isn’t it? It’s like an inner-city maternity ward, with one born every minute and nothing to particularly distinguish them apart until they grow up and we learn whether they stand the test of time. But sometimes, a rom-com is born that feels fresh and different from the get go, and stands out from the samey crowd. Mr. Right is one of these films - it impresses throughout on originality, humour and style.

Mr. Right follows Martha (Anna Kendrick), who goes through a pretty bad break-up. Charmingly childish and joyful, she bumps into an equally quirky individual at a shop and embarks on a sweet little romance with this so-called Mr. Right (Sam Rockwell). There’s just one problem…he’s a clown-nose wearing hitman, with a lot of money on his head. Despite his deadpan honesty about the people he’s killed and the people trying to kill him, the sweet Martha assumes he is being sarcastic and is actually just a normal guy. But pursuing him is the violently unpredictable Hopper (Tim Roth) who will stop at nothing to catch his target, and Martha may just learn that everything she’s been told is true. It’s darkly comic and dialogue-heavy – think McDonagh Brothers style (In Bruges, Seven Psychopaths, War on Everyone) and you’re pretty close.

While the plot may have some elements of predictability, there was something about Mr. Right’s style that made it damn fun from the first frame to the last. Firstly, the cast are all superb. Sam Rockwell was born for roles like this and is clearly loving every second of it, while Anna Kendrick puts in her funniest performance to date as the innocent Martha. Tim Roth is hilarious as the cunning Hopper and the supporting cast of RZA, Michael EKlund, James Ransone and Hell on Wheels’ Anson Mount are all stellar. And anyone who knows me knows the man crush is strong for Anson.

But the cast is irrelevant without a good script, and thanks to Max Landis (son of the legendary John), Mr. Right is packed with hilarious wit and some entertainingly simplistic plotting. Mr. Right isn’t a film that requires a great deal of your brain capacity – hell, it doesn’t really require any at all – and during Oscar season, that’s what you need for a bit of escapism. Films like Arrival and Manchester By The Sea are, obviously, far superior, but sometimes we need to switch off and have a laugh. It doesn’t make you a bad person to watch a bit of shit every now and then.

But on the whole, Mr. Right isn’t shit! It’s not the best film ever made but it’s bloody entertaining for its 90 minute runtime. I went into it expecting very little, but came away with a lot. It was consistently amusing, entertaining and fun. The action sequences worked, the jokes landed, the cast are all having fun and are on top form…It’s just a shock that this film didn’t get a bigger release. With a cast like this and quality to match, it should’ve been huge. But the UK especially was pretty shafted, as the film was dropped straight-to-DVD – and not only that, but with a glaring error on the cover that suggests the distributors haven’t even bothered to watch it. It’s set in New Orleans, not Las Vegas. Incompetence…

Anyway, Mr. Right deserves a bigger audience so it’s up to us to give it one. Watch it, enjoy it, tell your friends to watch it and enjoy it too. Mr. Right is great fun and absolutely one worth checking out. 

Sam Love

Mr. Right at CeX

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