When in Rome Reviews
One thing that I didn't like however was the pacing. I felt like the two main characters met, then they were instantly in love, and then there was immediate conflict. I will admit that I fell for it, but I think the pacing could have been better. I definitely recommend this one though...I liked it!
Beth is a hard working career woman whose last relationship says that she puts her work above him so he left her. When he tells her he found another career woman and is willing to stick it out with her and is engaged to her. Beth feels that there is no one for her. And when she goes to Rome to attend her sister's impromptu wedding and after meeting the best man, Nick she's attracted to him but after seeing him with another woman, she gets drunk and goes into the famed Fountain of Love and takes some coins thrown by people looking for love. When she goes back to New York four men start coming onto her. And Nick keeps calling her asking her out. She later learns that what she did--is a no no. It seems legend says that if you take a coins out of the fountain the person who threw it will fall in love with who took the coin. So she has to find a way to break the curse. And she wonders if Nick whom she likes is with her cause he wants to or is he under the spell.
I wasn't too convinced with the chemistry between Bell and Duhamel, but it was alright. The movie was somewhat humorous- I found myself giggling a few times.
It's a good movie to watch with friends or family for a good time.
DIRECTED BY: Mark Steven Johnson
SUMMARY: After fishing out coins from a water fountain in Italy, cynical New Yorker Beth Harper (Kristen Bell) finds herself being wooed by several ardent suitors. As she deals with the attention, Beth tries to figure out whether a charming reporter (Josh Duhamel) really loves her. Danny DeVito, Anjelica Huston, Jon Heder, Dax Shepard and Will Arnett also star in this romantic comedy.
MY THOUGHTS: "It was a bit better then I had thought, but not by much. Enough to give it three stars. It was cheesy, silly, and it kept a smile on my face. I needed a laugh and this movie did it for me. Wasn't the best romance comedy, but it was good enough. Love Kristen Bell, haven't seen Josh Duhamel in much but the 'Transformer' movies, and I thought he did funny well. Loved the cast. Danny, Jon, Will, Dax, are some funny guys in this movie. It's worth the rental. If your in the mood for fun and silly and just want a mind numbing comedy like I did, then this is it for you.."
Nate's Grade: C-
It's not just that this is another cliche-filled romantic comedy. I'm okay with those, just as an action flick can just be mindless popcorn fun - not every film needs to be high art. But no, this is bad even by rom-com standards. The plot is fairly ridiculous, and yes, filled with cliched dialogue. The suitors are over-the-top caricatures, void of any humor whatsoever... Especially Jon Heder (as always), who needs to quit acting ASAP. Duhamel is fairly likable, but here is forced to play this clumsy buffoon. His part could have been fine, but they seemed to think adding slapstick would make it more entertaining (It didn't).
As for Kristen, well... she was fine. Despite the crap she was given to work with, she still manages to charm. Spotting the film an extra star for Bell is the only reason it didn't rate 1 lonely star. Given a proper vehicle like Sandra Bullock had with While You Were Sleeping, Bell could easily break through to be the next big thing. But if she keeps picking projects like these, she'll be back on TV in no time. (and maybe next time don't pick the romantic comedy directed by the guy who did Daredevil and Ghost Rider)
I can't say that I was "disappointed", because my initial expectations for the movie didn't go beyond seeing Kristen Bell be cute and adorable. Without her, it would have been awful. With her, it's mediocre with bearable moments of an attractive woman being on screen.
I'd say that I chuckled maybe three times during the movie. It's thankfully too short to be tedious, despite the fact that the story is as generic and predictable as they come. Even a thirteen year old girl would be rolling her eyes at the idea that the two lead characters fall in "love" over the course of a few days and four or five meetings. Shallow, insipid, and trite are a few of the many descriptive words that came to mind as I watched this.
Being a fan of a particular actor or actress can lead one to watch things that normally wouldn't keep your attention as an in-flight movie, and that's certainly the case here. I recommend When in Rome to only the most hardcore fans of Kristen (or Duhamel, for the ladies), or to those who enjoy even the most anemic romantic comedies. I'm giving it a higher score than it deserves, because Bell is just that charming. Which makes wonder how it could have been if she had been attached to a an actual decent movie.
The best thing about is Kristen Bell, an actress who I think can do better. I don't know why she is wasting her time in a movie like this. Alexis Dziena as her sister is also good. It is not horrible, and it would be acceptable as a rental (probably), but paying $17 for it does not seem to be good value.