(director: Mark Steven Johnson; screenwriters: Hilary Galanoy/Elizabeth Hackett; cinematographer: José David Montero; editor: Kathryn Himoff; music: Ryan Shore; cast: Rachael Leigh Cook (Susan), Damon Wayans Jr. (Nick Evans), Heather Graham (Tamara), Caitlin Howden (Melanie), Brendan Taylor (Gideon), Sebastian Billingsley-Rodriguez (Oliver), Sean Amsing (Roberto), Lisa Durupt (Denise), Jed Rees (Bill Jones), Kandyse McClure (Arianna); Runtime: 90; MPAA Rating: TV-PG; producers: Rachael Leigh Cook/Stephaney Slack/Margret H. Huddleston/Dan Spilo; Netflix; 2020)
“Just another banal film for the rom/com genre dumpster.”
Reviewed by Dennis Schwartz
Mark Steven Johnson (“When in Rome”/”Daredevil”) directs this low-budget dullish rom/com built around a bogus gimmicky set-up–a civil suit to prove love doesn’t exist. Writers Hilary Galanoy and Elizabeth Hackett stick us with a gross civil suit plot.
Susan (Rachel Leigh Cook) is a struggling Seattle “civil litigator” for the little guy, whose underpaid office staff (Sean Amsing, Lisa Durupt ) are always ready to take a job with better prospects. Nick (Damon Wayans Jr.) is the rich bachelor ex-baseball player client who could hit a home run for her with his unique civil suit. He wants to bring a suit against the dating site Love Guaranteed for not living up to their agreement. He has gone on 986 dates, spending a lot of coin, and found no love as stipulated in the agreement is guaranteed. It seems each of his dates is flawed. Therefore the opportunist intends to shamelessly sue the site owner, Tamara (Heather Graham). She’s the traveling to Tibet-inspired hipster, around for laughs. But like her promise of love the laughs can’t be guaranteed.
The harmless fluff pic has no spark, the acting is bland, the story is predictable, the dialogue is torturous and the production is uninspiring. It’s just another banal film for the rom/com genre dumpster. In this one, lawyer and client make a love connection and probably are both so manipulative they deserve each other. Its attempt to skewer the dating app culture doesn’t come off with any success, as the effort at satire is dismal.
REVIEWED ON 9/24/2020 GRADE: C