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Posts Tagged ‘rom-com’

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If you’re looking for a film that challenges you, surprises you and throws lots of twists at you…yeah, you’re going to need to look elsewhere. This film is exactly what you’re going to expect it to be, and you’ll know it from the first 20 minutes. BUT, that’s something that you tend to find with rom-coms – it’s not the ending that gets you, it’s the journey that takes you there. And as entertaining journeys go, this one is not half bad. I watched this on a Saturday night, after a busy week, when I wanted something undemanding and not in any way distressing to watch. If that’s what you want too, then this film is ideal.

Former best friends Faye and Lydia (Michele Scarabelli and Jennifer Juniper Angeli) have been at loggerheads for the past ten years, opening rival bakeries in Emeryville, Ohio, and competing against each other in the annual pumpkin pie contest. In the latest contest they decide that their children Casey and Sam (Julie Gonzalo and Eric Aragon) should take over their roles, compete against each other and pass the feud down to the next generation. But Casey and Sam start to fall for each other, and can’t reveal their romance for fear of upsetting their mothers.

I liked the film a lot, because I knew what it was going to be when I started it, and that was exactly what I needed. Yes, it’s predictable and a bit contrived, but it does have a particular charm that kept me watching. Julie Gonzalo was lovely as Casey and I could definitely identify with her lack of culinary skills! Eric Aragon was less convincing as Sam but this didn’t really detract from my enjoyment. What can I say? I like rom-coms, I like knowing what’s going to happen and I like a happy ending.

Overall, an enjoyable but totally unsurprising movie. Perfect for those nights when you want something entertaining that doesn’t take too much brain work!

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Year of release: 2016

Director: Steven R. Monroe

Writer: Nina Weinman

Main cast: Julie Gonzalo, Eric Aragon, Michele Scarabelli, Jennifer-Juniper Angeli

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Costas Mandylor and Lauren Holly star in this romantic comedy.  Mandylor plays Marco Poloni, an Italian baker at The Poloni Brothers bakery in The Bronx.  All the local businesses in his area are closing down due to lack of money and it looks as though the bakery is going to go the same way.  Marco then learns about a baking competition which, if he wins, would earn him the money to save the business, but he needs a partner  to enter.  He enlists the help of Grace Carpenter, an uptight Chef from Manhattan who dreams of opening her own restaurant, but can’t find the funding to do it.  Despite appearing mismatched in personality, an attraction rapidly develops, but there are obstacles to overcome, including a former friend of Marco’s who is determined to sabotage their chances in the competition.

It’s hard for me to fairly review this film.  It’s a rom-com, and probably not a particularly great one.  Some of the acting is hammy, and the ending is predictable from about 20 minutes into the film.  But despite this, it has a real charm, and I absolutely adored it!  Costas Mandylor is as yummy as some of the gorgeous desserts he creates and Grace is endearing.  The desserts themselves are mouthwatering and made me crave a gooey slice of cake!

It’s an undemanding film, but very enjoyable.  I did root for the characters to get the ending they deserved, although as I said above, it’s fairly obvious what’s going to happen.  So there are no real surprises here, but plenty of moments to make a viewer smile…this is a sweet (in more ways than one) film, and I would definitely watch it again.

Year of release: 2004

Director: Kevin Connor

Writer: Joseph Tropiano

Main cast: Costas Mandylor, Lauren Holly, Andrew Lauer, David Proval

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Elizabeth Masterson (Reese Witherspoon) is a young doctor, so dedicated to her work that she has barely any social life at all.  She agrees to go on a blind date that her sister has set up for her, but as she’s driving there, she loses concentration for a second and when she looks up, a huge truck is headed straight for her car…

Three months later, David Abbot (Mark Ruffalo) – depressed at end of his marriage, and drinking too much – is looking for an apartment in San Francisco. After looking at several unsuitable ones, he finds one that seems perfect and moves in.  But he hasn’t been there long when a young woman named Elizabeth appears claiming that the apartment is hers.  She turns up with increasing frequency – but she has a habit of disappearing before his eyes…and why is David the only one that can see her?…

I thought this was a charming and amusing film.  The two leads are both wonderful and cute-as-a-button in their roles and there is real chemistry between them.  Mark Ruffalo and Reese Witherspoon raised the movie above ‘made for daytime tv’ status and I ended up caring about their characters and what happened to them.  There are also some very amusing scenes (including a few laugh out loud moments).  There was plenty of scope for visual comedy, and Ruffalo played these scenes to perfection.

This is basically just a feel great romantic comedy with a bit of a twist…able support is provided by rest of the cast, especially John Heder, as a young man who is able to sense ghosts and whose help David seeks, but this is really David and Elizabeth’s story.  I’d call it a ‘comfort movie’ – the sort of film that you’d put on when you need something to smile at.  It’s definitely one which I will watch again.  Definitely recommended to fans of comedy and rom-coms.

Year of release: 2005

Director: Mark Waters

Writers: Marc Levy (book), Peter Tolan, Leslie Dixon

Main cast: Reese Witherspoon, Mark Ruffalo, Jon Heder

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