For Jennifer Lopez fans, romantic comedies tend to be a must see. Especially when these rom-coms highlight a main character, down on her luck, rising like a phoenix in the end. Think, ‘Maid in Manhattan’, ‘The Wedding Planner’, and ‘Second Act’. All prime examples of Jennifer’s rise to the top, while always remaining in humility and light.
I’m sorry to say that even JLo can’t rescue ‘Marry Me’ in the end.
The sort of romantic comedy that Jennifer Lopez found herself in from the early 2000s to today has been one of humble (and perpetually single) beginnings to eventual love with a strikingly attractive leading man. ‘Marry Me” breaks this mold by going the sort of ‘Notting Hill’ route, where a powerful celebrity meets a “normal” person through unforeseen circumstances, and they fall in love to everyone’s astonishment. This is a formula that has stood the test of time and can be executed with great comedic force and romantic intentions.
‘Marry Me’ stars Lopez as Kat Valdez, one half of the music industry’s “it” couple. She is engaged to Bastian (real life music artist Maluma), and their hit single, “Marry Me”, is topping the charts. As promotion for their single, Kat and Bastian are going to get married live before an audience of millions, streamed across multiple platforms. Moments before going on stage, Kat discovers that Bastian had cheated on her with her assistant, and she has a breakdown live on stage. Suddenly, she spots a face in the crowd in high school math teacher Charlie (Owen Wilson), holding a sign with the words, “Marry Me” on it. She decides right then and there to say “yes” to Charlie’s fictitious proposal, and before you know it, the two are getting hitched in front of millions of viewers.
Yes, this all seems ridiculous and implausible, but that’s what Jennifer Lopez romantic comedies are all about. This impulsive decision by Kat and Charlie grows into slight hints of unanticipated romance, aided by Charlie’s daughter and his teacher-friend (Sarah Silverman). Charlie’s whirlwind romance becomes complicated when Bastian enters the picture again, and Kat must decide what true love really looks like for her.
‘Marry Me’ could have been much better. Sarah Silverman’s character as Charlie’s confidant and perpetual babysitter becomes annoying very fast. Even though the filmmakers make it clear that she is gay and not interested in Charlie, she is oddly invested in Charlie and Kat’s relationship that it becomes awkward for everyone involved. The casting choice of Owen Wilson was somewhat puzzling as well because Lopez and Wilson seemed to not have an ounce of chemistry on screen. Unlike the charisma of past Lopez love interests (Matthew McConaughey, Ralph Fiennes, Michael Vartan), Owen Wilson just doesn’t have what it takes to be a leading man in this genre. Lopez works her hardest though, as her kinetic energy single-handedly propels the movie forward with vocal and dance sequences fit for a broadway musical. The entire film sort of serves as a long form music video and new album for Lopez, with “Marry Me” and “On My Way” tracks that will be stuck in your head for days.
Save some time by downloading the soundtrack and maybe skip the source material.